Russell, who joined the Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA) in 1980, serves as the president and CEO of the association and is responsible for its day-to-day operations. Prior to being elected president in 2000, Russell served as executive vice president, general counsel, and corporate secretary. Over the last several years, Russell has worked with over thirty state and national associations to create IPAA's grassroots network, which helps the industry explain important policy positions to Congress and Washington policymakers. In addition, Russell developed the IPAA Education Center which is dedicated to teaching students at various levels about energy policy and careers in the industry.
Russell serves on the board of the IPAA Educational Foundation, the Business Industry Political Action Committee, and the National Energy Education Development Project. In the past he has served on the Board of the North American Prospect Expo, the Petroleum Technology Transfer Council, and the Jefferson Energy Foundation. He was a a founding member of the Environmental Issues Council, an organization of trade associations based in Washington, D.C.
Russell began his career in the Environmental Protection Agency's Office of General Counsel and Enforcement. Prior to joining IPAA, Russell worked for several management consulting firms including Booz, Allen and Hamilton. He received his law degree from George Washington University Law School, and he graduated from Penn State University with a B.S. in psychology and a B.A. in economics. He has also completed courses in environmental mediation and negotiation at Harvard University and MIT.