Pioneer Natural Resources Co. added Maria S. Jelescu Dreyfus, founder of Ardinall Investment Management, to its board of directors as the large independent oil and gas producer aims to elevate its ESG status.

Maria S Jelescu Dreyfus Ardinall Investment Management - Pioneer Natural Resources headshot
Maria S. Jelescu Dreyfus

Dreyfus co-founded Ardinall, a New York-based independent investment firm focusing on climate change and sustainable investments with an “ESG-based investment approach,” according to a release by Pioneer on Sept. 22. She currently serves as chief investment officer for the firm.

“We are excited to welcome Maria to the Pioneer board of directors,” Pioneer CEO Scott D. Sheffield commented in a company release. “Maria’s extensive experience in energy and infrastructure, combined with her deep knowledge of environmental, social and governance (ESG) matters will further strengthen Pioneer’s ESG leadership position.”

Pioneer, a large independent oil and gas E&P company with operations focused in the Permian Basin, recently adopted a net-zero emissions target that Sheffield said will ensure it remains an “ESG leader.”

“What appeals to me about joining Pioneer’s board of directors is the shared belief that leadership means excellent performance in financial, operational and ESG matters,” Dreyfus said in the release.

Pioneer announced its new net-zero emissions target on Sept. 15 alongside the publication of its 2021 Sustainability Report , which highlighted several key initiatives already underway including a 27% reduction in greenhouse-gas (GHG) emission intensity and 50% reduction in methane intensity in 2020.

“Pioneer continues to do impressive work, but it is not content with the status quo,” Dreyfus continued. “I look forward to working with Pioneer’s management team as it continues to further solidify its leading role in the energy transition.”

Prior to forming Ardinall, Dreyfus spent 15 years at Goldman Sachs, where she most recently served as portfolio manager and managing director for Goldman Sachs Investment Partners (GSIP). At GSIP, she focused on energy, industrials, transportation and infrastructure investments in both public and private markets.

Dreyfus currently serves on the board of directors at Macquarie Infrastructure Corp., on the board of CDPQ (one of Canada’s largest pension plans) and on the advisory board of Eni Next (Eni SpA’s corporate venture arm).

At Columbia University’s Center on Global Energy Policy, she as an advisory board member, executive committee member and as co-chair of the Women in Energy program. She also serves as a director on several private companies’ governing and advisory boards in the energy transition space (battery technologies, digitization and control technologies, etc.)

Additionally, Dreyfus is a member of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s (MIT) Corporation’s Development Committee and serves on the MIT Economics Department’s Visiting Committee. She has held her Chartered Financial Analyst designation since 2004 and holds a dual degree in economics and management science from MIT.

Chairman of the Pioneer Board, J. Kenneth Thompson, also added in the company release: “Maria’s deep background in finance, energy and ESG adds to our board’s collective skill set and her expertise will help guide the company successfully through the global energy transition.”