Get to know Michael Huff, Operations Assistant


Title: Operations Assistant

Years with Chevron: 22

Education: Graduated from Sonoma State University in 1989 with degrees in Biology and Chemistry; Completed studies in Energy Resource Management at UC Davis in 2011

Tell us about your job at the Richmond Refinery?

I work as an operations assistant in the Blending and Shipping unit of the Richmond Refinery. Our unit plays an important role in moving crude oil from ships to the process units and then taking the processed products and combining them into finished transportation fuels.

What do you mean by “blending and shipping”?

A final and critical step in the refining process is the blending of our products. Gasoline, for example, is blended from treated components made in several processing units. Our team works to combine these components in a way that ensures the blended products meet the standards required by government regulations and our customers’ high
expectations. Shipping refers to the process of getting products to and from the Refinery.

How does the Refinery ensure that high quality of the products?

Here at the Richmond Refinery, we have a modern, fully-equipped laboratory, with a team of chemists and technicians who conduct quality assurance tests on all finished products, including checking gasoline for proper octane rating. Techron®, Chevron’s patented fuel additive, and ethanol are added to gasoline at our marketing terminals, located throughout Northern California.

What type of fuels are made using this process?

The Richmond Refinery is a sophisticated facility comprised of several different operating units. This allows us to make a wide range of transportation fuels and lubricating base oils. We make fuels for everything from large commercial airliners to the family lawn mower.

What is your background?

I joined in 1994 as an operator. I have worked in a number of different parts of the Refinery over the years. I think this experience has given me a unique perspective to see things from many different points of view. The diversity of my background is an advantage when working in a complex business like ours.

What do you like to do in Richmond?

I enjoy taking my kids Liam (8) and Katrina (4) to the Richmond Plunge on the weekends. After swimming, we usually grab a bite to eat at one of our favorite restaurants, like the Great American Hamburger & Pie Co.

What do you like most about your job?

There is a lot of pride and effort that goes into producing a gallon of gasoline, diesel or jet fuel. It takes a lot of research, planning and execution involving a number of different people each day. There is a lot that goes on. And the fact that we do it over and over again successfully, while meeting the high standards of consumers and the State of California, is something I’m extremely proud of.