Sparks and Braziel to speak at Basin Electric 2022 Annual Meeting

Willis Sparks

Willis Sparks will deliver the keynote address at the 2022 Basin Electric Annual Meeting of the membership on Nov. 9. 

Sparks, director of Global Macro at Eurasia Group, is a leader on topics such as risk, opportunity, and trends created by geopolitical conflicts and developments in both emerging market countries and the U.S. His speeches on market-moving trends in international politics span the globe. 

Sparks is a graduate of Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs, Brown University, the Juilliard School, and the Institut d.Etudes Politiques in Paris. He holds an honorary degree from the Moscow Art Theatre School. Sparks has appeared on CNN, FOX, CNBC, BBC, and the CBS Evening News, and has performed roles on Broadway, off-Broadway, and in film and television. 

A native of Macon, Georgia, Sparks has worked as a stuntman at New York's Metropolitan Opera. As a child, he declined an opportunity to spend an afternoon riding the Great American Scream Machine, a rollercoaster, with Ronald McDonald, for money. He has never regretted that decision.

Sparks works directly with Ian Bremmer, president of Eurasia Group, on various macro political risk projects. He is also the senior editor for Signal, a weekly newsletter put out by Eurasia Group. 

Rusty Braziel

Special guest speaker, Rusty Braziel, is the founder and executive chairman of RBN Energy. He’s known for his expertise in the field of marketing, trading, and purchasing of energy commodities, along with his ability to bring clarity to the constant influx of information coming from energy markets. 

Braziel holds bachelor's and master's degrees in business and finance from Stephen F. Austin University. He spent 20 years with Texaco (now Chevron), serving as vice president of Natural Gas Marketing and Trading and manager of NGL Supply. Subsequently, he was vice president of Business Development for The Williams Companies, one of the largest natural gas pipeline and midstream companies in the U.S. 

In the 1990s, Braziel founded and served as president and CEO of Altra Energy Technologies, a developer of energy transaction management software including the Chalkboard trading system (now Intercontinental Exchange, or ICE). Later, he was co-owner and senior executive at Bentek Energy, an energy consultancy purchased by Platts/S&P Global in 2011. He was appointed to the National Petroleum Council by Energy Secretary Perry in 2019 and is on the board of the North American Energy Standards Board.  

Braziel has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The New York Times, and many other renowned publications. He is the author of The Domino Effect, a bestselling book about energy markets. 

The deadline to register for the Annual Meeting is Oct. 28. For assistance or questions related to this year’s meeting, please send an email to