69th Annual Natural Resources and Energy Law Institute

  • Salt Lake City, Utah
  • July 20-22, 2023


Jana L. Grauberger

JANA L. GRAUBERGER is an energy lawyer at Liskow & Lewis in Houston, Texas. She has more than 25 years of experience negotiating contracts, providing day-to-day regulatory advice and assistance, and handling administrative appeals, litigation, and arbitration matters with respect to federal offshore and state oil and gas matters and, more recently, offshore wind renewables projects. Jana drafts and negotiates purchase and sale agreements, participation agreements, joint operating agreements, production handling agreements, gathering agreements, connection agreements, transportation contracts, and other agreements related to oil and gas and pipeline development and operations. She represents traditional energy and renewables clients in connection with navigating the complex statutory and regulatory framework applicable to federal offshore energy development managed by U.S. Department of Interior subagencies BOEM, BSEE, and ONRR. Jana has served on the Foundation’s board of directors, and she co-chairs the recurring Federal Offshore Leasing and Development Short Course. She is also active with the Women’s Energy Network (WEN) and currently serves on the board of the WEN Foundation, which provides grants and scholarships to high school students pursuing STEM careers and to energy industry professionals looking to upskill their current education and training.


Sarah Black

SARAH BLACK is a Staff Landman at Range Resources in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania. She is a Pennsylvania licensed attorney and graduate of the University of Virginia and the Pennsylvania State University, Dickinson School of Law. She has been with Range Resources since 2013, and her primary responsibilities include managing land-related litigation, leasing in Beaver and Washington counties in Pennsylvania, and performing heirship and genealogical research. Sarah is active in her local bar association and has presented CLEs on various topics, including Quiet Title Ethical Issues, Post-Production Costs in a Low-Price Environment, Cross-Unit Drilling, and Effective Planning and Drillsite Preparation.

Robert D. Comer

ROBERT D. COMER is a director in the Fennemore law firm’s Natural Resources, Energy and Environment practice group. Bob’s practice focuses on mining, oil, gas, pipe and transmission lines, renewables, water, and energy development. Bob counsels industry and government executives on a wide array of sensitive issues and has held senior leadership positions in business and the federal government. He is known for his ability to design and implement effective legal and practical solutions to overcome project permitting and compliance challenges across a vast array of projects involving federal land management, sensitive resource protection, endangered species, wetlands, cultural resources, and Native American law. Bob has testified before the U.S. Congress on Mining Law, prepared the first North American Justified Deviation under the Equator Principles (version 4), and has advanced numerous resource projects. He has served as President of the American Exploration & Mining Association, Natural Resources Practitioner in Residence at DU Law School, Chair of the Colorado Bar Association Natural Resources and Environment Section, national chair of various ABA resource, land and mining sections, and Trustee to The Foundation for Natural Resources and Energy Law. Bob has published widely and serves as an update author of the American Law of Mining Treatise.

Sarah Y. Dicharry

SARAH Y. DICHARRY is a partner in Jones Walker’s Litigation Practice Group. She counsels exploration and production companies regarding their rights and obligations under the complicated legal framework governing federal oil and gas leases, including concerning issues arising under the Federal Oil and Gas Royalty Management Act, the Royalty Simplification and Fairness Act, the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act, the Mineral Leasing Act, the Indian Mineral Leasing Act, the False Claims Act, and the Administrative Procedure Act. Sarah regularly represents clients in administrative and judicial appeal proceedings and in response to a variety of governmental investigations and enforcement actions, including matters arising under the federal leasing statutes, investigations initiated by the Office of Inspector General, and investigations initiated under the False Claims Act.

Megan J. Houdeshel

MEGAN J. HOUDESHEL is the Co-Chair of Dorsey’s Energy & Natural Resources Group and Co-Chair of Dorsey’s Salt Lake City office. She counsels clients through all aspects of major project development and advises clients on environmental requirements including permitting, compliance, and enforcement. She has a breadth of experience assisting clients through complex environmental permitting matters under the National Environmental Policy Act, Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, and community right to know laws. This experience allows her to guide clients through project development beginning with lands or mineral rights acquisition to full operation and continued compliance. Megan actively represents mining, petroleum, chemical, energy, real estate development, and public utility interests throughout the western United States and Canada. As part of her regulatory compliance practice, she also assists clients with environmental aspects of real property and mining transactions including brownfields redevelopment and public lands leasing transactions. She has been recognized by Chambers USA as one of “America’s Leading Business Lawyers” in Environment, Natural Resources & Regulated Industries. She serves as a board member for Utah Open Lands and as an adjunct faculty member at the S.J. Quinney College of Law.

Sam Kalen

SAM KALEN joined the University of Wyoming College of Law faculty in 2009 and is the William T. Schwartz Distinguished Professor of Law and Associate Dean, as well as the founder and co-director of the School’s Center for Law and Energy Resources in the Rockies. Before joining UW, Sam taught as a visitor or adjunct at a number of other law schools, served in the Solicitor’s Office at the Department of the Interior during the Clinton administration, and practiced for many years with a Washington, D.C., law firm. Immediately after law school, he clerked at the Missouri Supreme Court. Sam teaches and writes in a variety of areas that impact environmental, public lands and natural resources, energy, and administrative law. He spent years practicing in each of these areas, including working with Indigenous Peoples and Tribal Nations, and attempts to explore these areas in both the classroom and in his scholarship. He is the author and co-author of numerous law review articles, including one that was cited and quoted in a Supreme Court opinion. He also is a co-author of the American Bar Association’s ENDANGERED SPECIES BASIC PRACTICE SERIES book (2nd Edition), a co-author of NATURAL RESOURCES LAW AND POLICY (3d ed. Foundation Press), and a co-author of ENERGY FOLLIES: MISSTEPS, FIASCOS, AND SUCCESSES OF AMERICA’S ENERGY POLICY (Cambridge U. Press 2018).

Margaret L. Meister

MARGARET L. MEISTER is a shareholder in the Albuquerque, New Mexico, office of Modrall Sperling. She has served clients for over 30 years in the areas of real estate, commercial transactions, and business. Meg’s work often focuses on energy, both traditional and renewable, by assisting with real estate acquisition, leasing, local permitting, and financing. Chambers USA recognized Meg with a top ranking in Real Estate law, noting “'[Meg] has an impressive reputation throughout the state among both clients and peers. Clients are quick to praise her fantastic ability as a communicator and her amazing depth of knowledge,’ and that [she] is lauded by market commentators as ‘the state expert on real estate.’” She is listed by Best Lawyers in America® in Corporate Law and Real Estate Law and was recognized as “Lawyer of the Year” in Albuquerque in 2020 for Real Estate Law and in 2022 for Corporate Law. Meg has been selected as one of the Top 25 New Mexico Super Lawyers five times. She has achieved Martindale-Hubbell’s AV® Preeminent rating and named a “Woman of Influence” and “Best of the Bar” in 2009 by New Mexico Business Weekly. Most recently, Meg was featured in Albuquerque Business First’s “Who’s Who in Law”.

Jesse J. Richardson, Jr.

JESSE J. RICHARDSON, JR. is a Professor of Law and the Lead Land Use Attorney at the Land Use and Sustainable Development Law Clinic at the West Virginia University College of Law. Before coming to WVU, Professor Richardson was an Associate Professor in Urban Affairs and Planning at Virginia Tech. He holds a B.S. and M.S. in Agricultural and Applied Economics from Virginia Tech and a J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law. He began his legal career in private practice in his hometown of Winchester, Virginia. His research and experience focus on energy law, land use law, and water law. Professor Richardson previously served on the Board Directors of the American Agricultural Law Association (AALA), including stints as President-Elect and President of that organization. Professor Richardson previously served on the Virginia Water Policy Technical Advisory Committee. He was honored with the 2022 AALA Distinguished Service Award, 2022 AALA Professional Scholarship Award, 2009 University Certificate of Excellence in Outreach and the 2004 William E. Wine Award for a history of teaching Excellence from Virginia Tech (the highest teaching award granted by the university), and the AALA 1999 Professional Scholarship Award.

Frederic G. Sourgens

FREDERIC (FREDDY) G. SOURGENS will be the James McCulloch Chair in Energy Law at Tulane University Law School and Director of the Tulane Center for Energy Law as of July 1, 2023. Until July 1, Freddy is the Senator Robert J. Dole Distinguished Professor of Law at Washburn University School of Law and Co-Director of the Washburn Oil and Gas Law Center.  Freddy holds a JD from Tulane University Law School and a PhD (Law) from the Johann Wolfgang Goethe Universität, Frankfurt.

Adriano D. Trindade

ADRIANO D. TRINDADE is a partner at Mattos Filho Advogados in Brasília, Brazil. He is specialized in mining law and policy, with significant domestic and international experience. Adriano has provided legal advice for years to clients focusing on regulatory issues, project development, contracts, mergers and acquisitions, financing, and ESG factors related to mining. As such, he has been involved in major projects and transactions in the mining sector. Adriano has also delivered capacity-building programs in Natural Resources and Mining Law to governments. His expertise has been recognized by international legal guides such as Chambers & Partners and Who’s Who Legal. Besides his legal practice, Adriano is a professor at the University of Brasília and teaches courses on Mineral Law and Policy at other Brazilian and international institutions. He holds a PhD in Law and Regulation from the University of Brasília, and an LLM (Distinction) in Natural Resources Law & Policy from the Centre for Energy, Petroleum and Mineral Law and Policy of the University of Dundee. Adriano recently became a Trustee-at-Large for The Foundation for Natural Resources and Energy Law and serves on the Foundation’s International Committee.

Amy M. Wall

AMY M. WALL is the Managing Counsel for the Gulf of Mexico Business Unit for Chevron Americas Exploration and Production Company, a division of Chevron U.S.A. Inc. Her primary office is in Covington, Louisiana, and she manages legal teams in both Covington and Houston, Texas. Amy first joined Chevron in 2011 as Senior Counsel supporting Chevron’s various Major Capital Projects throughout the world. She was also formerly Supervising Counsel in Chevron’s San Joaquin Valley Business Unit in Bakersfield, California. Before Chevron, she practiced law at King & Spalding LLP as a member of its Global Projects team in Atlanta and Houston. She has a B.A. in Economics and Communications and J.D. from Mercer University. For fun, she enjoys scuba diving, traveling, and spending time with her husband and children.

Corey F. Wehmeyer

COREY F. WEHMEYER is the Managing Shareholder of Santoyo Wehmeyer P.C. Corey represents energy industry participants in trials, arbitrations, and disputes. Clients include operators, working interest owners, drilling contractors, oil field service companies, pipeline companies, refiners, and mining companies. He has handled matters in Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, and North Dakota. He also represents clients in general real property and commercial litigation matters. As lead attorney, Corey has tried oil and gas jury trials to multi-million dollar verdicts and judgments for clients, and has also secured take nothing defense verdicts. Corey is also an appellate attorney and has successfully represented energy clients in oral argument and briefing before the Supreme Court of Texas and many intermediate courts of appeal. He is also Board Certified by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization in both Civil Trial Law and Oil, Gas and Mineral Law.


Ahab Abdel-Aziz

AHAB ABDEL-AZIZ is a partner and global director of the Nuclear Power Generation practice at Gowling WLG. He has been a leader in the global nuclear sector for more than 30 years. Ahab is the chair of the board of directors of the Organization of Canadian Nuclear Industries (OCNI), immediately past president and present member of the board of the Canadian Nuclear Law Organization (CNLO). Ahab has advised leading members of the Canadian and international nuclear energy sector and government agencies in policy and legislative development, nuclear project and program development and finance, licensing and compliance, and dispute resolution. He has also advised clients in other sectors, including petroleum and petrochemicals, mining and forestry, manufacturing, and major project development. Ahab is a leading lawyer in the nuclear sector and has served as lead negotiator in multi-billion dollar nuclear project contract negotiations, as well as lead litigation counsel in technically complex civil and regulatory disputes, including multi-billion dollar nuclear project arbitration. He is recognized as one of Canada's top energy lawyers by Legal 500 Canada (Leading Lawyer), Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory, Report on Business/Lexpert Special Edition: Canada's Leading Energy Lawyers, Who's Who Legal: Canada, and Who's Who Legal: The International Who's Who of Energy Lawyers.

Scot W. Anderson

SCOT W. ANDERSON is a partner in the Denver office of Hogan Lovells. He advises clients on commercial transactions, including the acquisition, divestiture, and financing of natural resource projects. Scot's work on project development includes finance, regulatory compliance, permitting, and commercial and partnership agreements. He represents extractives clients in administrative proceedings as well as in federal, state, and tribal courts. He addresses issues related to mineral development of federal public lands and Indian lands. He is also a member of the core team for the Hogan Lovells ESG practice. He regularly advises on projects throughout the Americas, Europe, Australia, Africa, and Asia. Scot routinely works with the International Senior Lawyers Project to provide legal support and extractives related capacity building for developing economies, including Afghanistan, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Malawi, and Liberia. He is also working on the development of natural resources in outer space. Scot is the former global head of the Hogan Lovells Energy and Natural Resources industry sector and is a past President of The Foundation for Natural Resources and Energy Law. He is also an honorary lecturer at the Centre for Energy, Petroleum & Mineral Law and Policy at the University of Dundee.

Catherine Banet

CATHERINE BANET is Professor in Energy Law at the University of Oslo, Scandinavian Institute of Maritime Law, and Head of the Energy and Resources Law Department, Norway. Her legal research activities focus on energy market design, energy transport infrastructures regulation, renewable energy and notably offshore wind, support schemes, and alternative financing models, climate change mitigation measures including carbon capture and storage (CCS), and hydrogen regulation. Professor Banet has a background from the private law practice (Norway, France), the European Commission (DG ENV), U.S. diplomatic mission, and academia. She has lecturing experience from international universities and is a regular speaker at conferences. She is the author of several books, studies, and articles. Professor Banet is one of the four academic directors of the professional LL.M. program North Sea Energy Law Partnership (NSELP). She is a member of the Academic Advisory Group of the Section on Energy, Environment and Infrastructure Law of the IBA, and Chair of the Board of the Norwegian Energy Law Association. She is an Academic Research Fellow at the Centre on Regulation in Europe (CERRE).

Ilya Batikov

ILYA BATIKOV is a partner in the Columbus office of Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease LLP and a member of the firm’s energy, finance, and real estate groups. His practice focuses primarily on oil and gas litigation, including disputes concerning leases, royalties, title, and upstream contracts. Ilya also counsels clients in matters involving oil and gas development and operations. He also has experience representing clients in proceedings before Ohio’s Division of Natural Resources, Oil and Gas Commission, and Public Utilities Commission.

Karrigan S. Börk

KARRIGAN S. BÖRK is an Acting Professor of Law at UC Davis School of Law. His publications run the gamut from the definitive text on the history and application of California Fish and Game Code Section 5937 to a hatchery and genetic management plan for spring-run Chinook salmon. He works on legal and ethical issues in ecological restoration, including local governance issues in ecosystem management. His current work focuses on western water law. Professor Bork graduated with Distinction and Pro Bono Distinction from Stanford Law School in 2009 and completed his PhD dissertation in Ecology at UC Davis in September 2011. He received the Shapiro Family Award in 2011 as the Outstanding PhD Graduate in Ecology at UC Davis. He clerked for Tenth Circuit Chief Judge Mary Beck Briscoe, U.S. District Court Judge Julie Robinson, and Judge Janice Karlin on the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Kansas. In 2022, he received the UC Davis Distinguished Teaching award.

Michael R. Brassett, II

MICHAEL R. BRASSETT, II, is the managing member of Bradley Murchison Kelly & Shea in its Baton Rouge, Louisiana office where he focuses his practice in the areas of oil, gas, energy law and renewable energy law. His experience includes oil and gas title examination and transactions; intrastate pipeline regulation; litigation; carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS); regulatory consultations; and general business law. His practice focuses on serving producers and others engaged in onshore and offshore operations throughout the state and the Gulf of Mexico. In his practice, he represents multiple E&P companies in their acquisition, development, and divestment of assets. This includes, but is not limited to, title review including the drafting of drill site and division order title opinions. He assists his clients in lease negotiations, surface use and ROW Agreements, in addition to representation in regulatory proceedings with the Louisiana Office of Conservation. Mr. Brassett represents service providers in the energy industry, assisting them in the drafting of various commercial agreements, and the drafting and negotiation of master service agreements. He also has significant experience with solar projects and other renewables sources of energy such as biomethane landfill projects and geothermal recovery wells.

Andrea M. Bronson

ANDREA M. BRONSON is a partner at Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP, where her practice focuses on water, natural resources, and environmental law.  Ms. Bronson’s environmental practice encompasses issues related to permitting and regulatory compliance, enforcement, water quality, site remediation, and environmental litigation.  Ms. Bronson counsels clients in matters involving the Clean Water Act, CERCLA, RCRA, and other federal and state environmental laws, and she has litigated cases in state and federal courts relating to these matters.  She has also represented clients in administrative proceedings before the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission and Colorado Water Quality Control Commission.  Ms. Bronson also represents clients in water court litigation and in transactions involving water rights, including water rights due diligence in property acquisitions.  Ms. Bronson was named among the “Ones to Watch” in the area of Natural Resources Law (2021-2023) and Eminent Domain and Condemnation Law (2022-2023) by Best Lawyers. Ms. Bronson graduated in the Order of St. Ives from the University of Denver College of Law. She earned her Bachelor of Arts from Colby College.

Alberto Büll 

ALBERTO BÜLL is a partner in the Power and Projects and Infrastructure practices at Veirano Advogados in São Paulo, Brazil. He has extensive know-how in regulatory matters, including administrative litigation before regulatory agencies, power sector auctions, PPAs and trading models, M&A transactions, project development, and finance. Throughout his nearly 20 years of experience, Alberto has also advised clients in a wide range of financial and capital markets transactions, including corporate finance transactions, equity and debt offerings, investments in regulated funds, restructuring and refinancing transactions, divestitures, and acquisitions in both regulated and non-regulated sectors (including a stint working in New York City). Prior to his current role, Alberto was General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer at a leading energy company in São Paulo and a partner at one of the most reputable energy law firms in Brazil. His work in the power sector has been recognized by international legal guides such as Chambers & Partners Global, Chambers & Partners Latin America, and The Legal 500 Latin America. In addition to his law degree, Alberto holds MBA degrees in Strategic Management and Business Administration from Université Pierre Mendès France (currently, Université Grenoble Alpes) and Fundação Instituto de Administração – FIA in Brazil.

Daniel Charest

DANIEL CHAREST is partner and co-founder of Burns Charest LLP in Dallas, TX. With a national trial practice, he tries big cases with big results. Specific to damages, last year Daniel led a trial team that obtained a $41 million verdict from a Denver state-court jury in a case relating to the loss of a foreign oil and gas concession and related royalties. A month later, Daniel tried a series of bellwether cases in a mass takings action against the United States with an estimated aggregate value of over $1.5 billion, which the DOJ defense lawyers describe as the “largest Fifth Amendment takings case in history.” Daniel’s other relevant oil and gas damages experience involves an international arbitration in London over a deep-water drilling block off the coast of Africa and several royalty actions against major operators on behalf of marquis landowners, such as the Bass Brothers of Fort Worth and Black Stone Minerals, the largest mineral owner in the country. For the most part, Daniel works on a contingent-fee basis, which makes the computation and proof of damages critical to the case’s success for both client and lawyer alike.

Lily N. Chinn

LILY N. CHINN is a nationally recognized environmental partner in Baker Botts’ San Francisco office. In agency enforcement actions, litigation and investigations, Lily’s clients benefit from her years of experience as a U.S. Department of Justice trial attorney in environmental and criminal matters, where she routinely represented EPA Region 9 and other federal agencies. Using her familiarity with government decision-making processes, Lily crafts strategies that are grounded in substantive, technical knowledge, while pointing to practical solutions that are persuasive to agencies. She has helped clients avoid criminal and civil charges and reach favorable settlements with government authorities and private parties. Lily is well-versed in the litigation of complex appellate and district court cases and has tried cases nationwide, including bench and jury trials in California federal and state courts.

Robin Kundis Craig

ROBIN KUNDIS CRAIG is the Robert C. Packard Trustee Chair in Law at the USC Gould School of Law, where she teaches Environmental Law, Water Law, Ocean and Coastal Law, Toxic Torts, Civil Procedure, and Administrative Law. She specializes in all things water, including climate change adaptation in the water sector; the food-water-energy nexus; water quality and water allocation law; marine protected areas and marine spatial planning; and the intersection of freshwater and ocean and coastal law.  She is the author, co-author, or editor of 12 books—including textbooks on Environmental Law, Water Law, and Toxic Torts—and over 100 law or science journal articles and book chapters. Robin is an elected member of American Law Institute and the American College of Environmental Lawyers and a member of the IUCN’s World Commission on Environmental Law. Her comments on contemporary water, marine, and climate change issues have been quoted in National Geographic, The Atlantic, The New York Times, Popular Science, and many other news outlets. Robin received her J.D. summa cum laude with a Certificate in Environmental Law from the Lewis & Clark School of Law.

Taylor L. Curtis

TAYLOR L. CURTIS is a regulatory/policy analyst at the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory and a licensed attorney by trade. She has over a decade of experience in permitting and environmental policy working to enable a circular economy for energy materials and to develop sustainable energy solutions for both industry and government. Some of her most recent work includes considerations for solar PV, wind, and battery energy storage system and equipment end-of-performance decisions, such as system refurbishment, repowering and decommissioning, and circular pathways to equipment management.

Lisa DeMarco

LISA DEMARCO is a Senior Partner and CEO at Resilient LLP, she is recognized as a Canadian and global expert in climate and energy law. She has over 25 years of experience in all aspects of climate change and clean energy. Lisa also assists financial and energy companies and Indigenous business organizations on domestic and overseas renewable power project development, energy storage projects, sustainable and climate finance transactions, carbon capture and storage, climate-related financial disclosure, corporate climate risk, environmental and social governance (ESG), green bonds and sustainable business strategy. Lisa plays an active role for Fortune 500 companies in corporate ESG, climate change, and transition strategy, target setting and compliance. She also represents several governments and leading energy companies in a wide variety of natural gas, power, pipeline and energy storage matters before the Ontario and National Energy Boards. Lisa is a director of the boards of Blue Dot Carbon Corp., the Advanced Energy Centre at MaRS, the consultation group of the Carney Task Force on Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets, Vice chair of the International Emissions Trading Association and member of Climate Economy Strategic Council. Lisa is ranked by Chambers Global as one of the world's leading climate change lawyers and regularly attends the United Nations climate negotiations.

Sarah Y. Dicharry

SARAH Y. DICHARRY is a partner in Jones Walker’s Litigation Practice Group. She counsels exploration and production companies regarding their rights and obligations under the complicated legal framework governing federal oil and gas leases, including concerning issues arising under the Federal Oil and Gas Royalty Management Act, the Royalty Simplification and Fairness Act, the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act, the Mineral Leasing Act, the Indian Mineral Leasing Act, the False Claims Act, and the Administrative Procedure Act.  Sarah regularly represents clients in administrative and judicial appeal proceedings and in response to a variety of governmental investigations and enforcement actions, including matters arising under the federal leasing statutes, investigations initiated by the Office of Inspector General, and investigations initiated under the False Claims Act.

Matthew E. Draper

MATTHEW E. DRAPER serves as arbitrator and counsel in international arbitration and domestic arbitrations. He also represents states and amicus curiae in transboundary water disputes before the U.S. Supreme Court. Over the past 20 years, Matthew has acted as advocate, arbitrator, or legal expert in over 70 arbitrations or related disputes concerning water, natural resources, renewable energy, commodities, and, among other things, international commercial contracts. Matthew is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and Vice Chair of its New York Branch. He is also a member of the International Chamber of Commerce’s Commission (ICC) on Arbitration and ADR and was a member of the recently concluded ICC Task Force on Arbitration of Climate Change Related Disputes. He is also a past Co-Chair of New York Arbitration Week. Matthew practiced international arbitration for leading international law firms in New York and London before co-founding Draper & Draper. Prior to that he served in The Hague as a legal officer for the High Commissioner on National Minorities, where he advised on public international legal issues. Matthew Draper is a graduate of Princeton University and Columbia Law School. He is a member of the New York, District of Columbia, and New Mexico Bars.

Brandon E. Durrett

BRANDON E. DURRETT is an attorney in the San Antonio office of Jackson Walker LLP in its Energy Practice Group. He is a Board Certified oil and gas attorney and an alumnus of Brigham Young University and Texas Tech School of Law. Practicing in Texas and New Mexico, Brandon counsels petroleum industry clients in mergers and acquisitions, commercial industry agreements, and complex disputes over oil and gas assets. Brandon has broad experience negotiating purchase and sale agreements for upstream and midstream assets, plus related marketing and financing agreements. He also works closely with his corporate colleagues on energy-related mergers, membership interest purchases, joint ventures, and capital investments. Brandon regularly negotiates complex petroleum industry agreements, such as “DrillCo” and participation agreements, JOAs, MSAs, contract operating agreements, production marketing and gathering contracts, commercial SWD agreements, water sale and supply agreements, pooling and communitization agreements, and surface use agreements. Brandon often teams with his litigation colleagues in oil and gas disputes involving lease termination claims, title and deed construction, operatorship conflicts, payout and non-consent issues, PSA disputes, royalty mispayment, and surface use conflicts. Brandon also advises clients in regulatory compliance matters regarding drilling permits, spacing and density issues, P&A liability, and force pooling.

David E. Filippi

DAVID E. FILIPPI, a partner with Stoel Rives LLP, practices in the areas of natural resources, environmental and land use law. He concentrates his practice on water rights and water quality, fish and wildlife law, and project facility siting and permitting. Mr. Filippi has been closely involved in the development and implementation of numerous Endangered Species Act compliance strategies on behalf of both public and private clients. His experience includes Section 7 consultations on behalf of local governments and development interests seeking permits or contract approvals from federal agencies, as well as the development of Section 10 habitat conservation plans for non-federal entities. Mr. Filippi’s water law practice encompasses regional water supply planning, water management and conservation planning, and compliance with water basin programs. He works regularly with clients to inventory and secure existing water rights, obtain new water rights, and transfer existing water rights to new uses. He also advises clients as to Clean Water Act compliance and NPDES permitting. Mr. Filippi holds a B.S. and an M.S. from Kansas State University and earned his J.D. from Northwestern School of Law, Lewis & Clark College.

Stephanie Fishman

STEPHANIE FISHMAN is an Associate at Hogan Lovells in Washington, DC, where she brings years of federal government experience and a background in nuclear engineering to assist clients with high-stakes transactions and address complex regulatory needs. This includes first-of-a-kind technology licensing with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), Department of Energy, and state and international entities. Before joining Hogan Lovells, she was a judicial law clerk with the Atomic Safety & Licensing Board Panel at the NRC, and she also worked for the Defense Threat Reduction Agency within the Department of Defense supporting international nuclear security projects.

Erik Goldsilver

ERIK GOLDSILVER is a partner in Gowling WLG's Toronto office, and a member of the firm's international Mining Group. He has more than 20 years' experience helping mining companies through the full lifecycle of their projects. Erik has an extensive background in matters involving mining and natural resources, both domestically and internationally. His practice focuses principally on mining law, including in-depth experience with streaming transactions and royalty agreements. Erik is well-versed in all aspects of the development, construction, and operation of mining projects. He has advised on Indigenous issues and claims, environmental and regulatory compliance matters, and permitting issues, as well as mine closure, decommissioning, and reclamation issues. Among other accolades, Erik has been recognized in the 2022 edition of the Lexpert/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada, and the 2022 edition of Chambers Canada – Canada's Leading Lawyers for Business.

Burke W. Griggs

BURKE W. GRIGGS is a Professor of Law at Washburn University School of Law, where he teaches property, natural resources law, and legal history. His scholarship explores the historical, technical, and cultural aspects of natural resources law, especially water law. Previously, he represented the State of Kansas in federal and interstate water matters, most prominently Kansas v. Nebraska, an original action before the Supreme Court to enforce the Republican River Compact and served as counsel of record for Kansas in the Kickapoo Tribe reserved water rights settlement. He currently leads litigation against the Department of Interior to protect the Quivira National Wildlife Refuge in Kansas and advises the Departments of Commerce and State on lithium-related legal matters. He has authored numerous scholarly articles, and co-authors standard casebooks on both water law and oil and gas law. Professor Griggs is affiliated with the Woods Institute for the Environment and the Bill Lane Center for the American West, both at Stanford University, and serves as a Trustee for the Foundation. A Denver native, he earned his B.A. from Stanford, his Ph.D from Yale (both in history), and his J.D. from the University of Kansas.

Keith B. Hall

KEITH B. HALL is the Nesser Family Chair in Energy Law at Louisiana State University, where he serves as Director of the Mineral Law Institute and Director of the John P. Laborde Energy Law Center. He teaches Mineral Rights, International Petroleum Transactions, Civil Law Property, and Energy Law & Regulation. He is a co-author or editor of four books: (1) The Law of Oil and Gas; (2) International Petroleum Law and Transactions; (3) Hydraulic Fracturing: A Guide to Environmental and Real Property Issues; and (4) The Regulation of Decommissioning, Abandonment and Reuse Initiatives in the Oil and Gas Industry. Keith’s shorter publications have addressed carbon capture and storage, implied covenants in oil and gas leases, pooling and unitization, joint operating agreements, hydraulic fracturing, induced seismicity, and the management of produced water. He has served as an arbitrator, author of amicus briefs, and as an expert witness in oil and gas disputes arising in several different states, as well as outside the U.S.  Before joining the LSU faculty in 2012, Keith practiced law at a major firm in New Orleans for sixteen years, and before that he worked for eight years as a chemical engineer.

Jared A. Hembree

JARED A. HEMBREE is a partner in the Roswell, New Mexico office of Hinkle Shanor LLP and is an adjunct professor at Washington & Lee University School of Law, where he teaches Oil and Gas Law. His primary practice is in oil and gas law, including title examination, transactions, and litigation. Jared is a Trustee of The Foundation for Natural Resources and Energy Law and on the faculty of the Foundation’s Federal Oil and Gas Leasing Short Course. He has served in various capacities for the American Association of Professional Landmen and the New Mexico Landmen’s Association and is the Vice-President of the Independent Petroleum Association of New Mexico. Jared received a J.D. from Washington & Lee University School of Law in 2005 with Honors and a B.A. in History with a Minor in Museum Studies from Montana State University in Bozeman, Montana, in 2000.

Florencia Heredia

FLORENCIA HEREDIA is a senior partner of Allende & Brea, where she heads the Natural Resources and Energy practice. She is an expert in natural resources matters, including forestry, fisheries, and mining law with 30 years extensive experience advising financing institutions and companies in complex mining and energy transactions in Argentina. She actively participated in the financing of the Bajo de la Alumbrera Project and the Cerro Vanguardia Project, and led the financing of the Veladero Project, which together represent all the major mining projects that have been financed in Argentina. She obtained her law degree with honors (summa cum laude) from Universidad Católica Argentina and a masters degree with honors (summa cum laude) in Business Law from Universidad Austral. She also has a degree in corporate sustainability with honors from IESC (Instituto de Estudios para la Sustentabilidad Corporativa). Florencia has been consistently nominated as a leading mining lawyer and star individual by Chambers and Partners, Legal 500, etc., and has been included in the lists of main mining lawyers of the world by Who’s Who Editions in the last 30 years, being recipient of the Mining Lawyer of the Year award for 2013, 2015, 2016, 2018, 2019 and 2020 and one of the highlighted women in the Women in Law reviews.

Dietrich C. Hoefner

DIETRICH C. HOEFNER is a partner in the Denver office of Lewis Roca where he focuses his practice on complex regulatory matters. He provides regulatory and permitting advice across numerous sectors including energy, utilities, and natural resources, with a focus on regulated industries.

Hillary M. Hoffmann

HILLARY M. HOFFMANN is the Co-Executive Director of the Bears Ears Intertribal Coalition. In this role, she supervises the intergovernmental land management planning effort for the advancement and realization of the collaborative management relationship at the Bears Ears National Monument as well as oversees implementation of the Coalition Tribes’ Land Management Plan. She also manages the Coalition’s external relationships with nongovernmental entity allies and partners, including regional and national environmental and conservation organizations. Before joining the Coalition, Hillary was a law professor and consultant on several indigenous environmental governance projects and initiatives involving tribal lands, tribal resources, and federal and state public lands. She published a book on cultural resource protection: A Third Way: Decolonizing the Laws of Indigenous Cultural Protection (Cambridge U. Press, 2020) (with Monte Mills), which explored the potential for collaborative management and other strategies to more fully protect tribal cultural resources on tribal, federal, and state lands. Hillary holds a J.D. from the S.J. Quinney College of Law at the University of Utah and a B.A. from Middlebury College. She has served as a Commissioner on the Vermont Commission on Native American Affairs and is a member of the American Law Institute.

Brandi G. Howard

BRANDI G. HOWARD’s practice focuses on representing corporate and individual clients in government investigations and complex commercial trial and appellate litigation. Brandi was named among the National Bar Association’s “Top 40 Under 40” in 2022 and has been named a top 40 under 40 lawyer in Washington, D.C. by The National Black Lawyers since 2021. Brandi’s investigations practice involves defending clients in government investigations conducted by regulatory and enforcement bodies involving healthcare fraud, consumer protection, antitrust, and anti-money laundering issues and in congressional investigations often involving consumer protection and employment issues. Brandi’s litigation practice involves defending and representing clients in routine and high stakes litigation. Brandi represents clients in cases involving the False Claims Act; constitutional issues such as free speech, religious freedom, and sovereign immunity; and breach of contract and consumer protection cases. Brandi also represents individuals and companies in cases before the D.C. Court of Appeals involving adverse actions from District of Columbia administrative agencies. Brandi is a two-time appellate law clerk, having clerked for former Chief Judge Eric T. Washington of the D.C. Court of Appeals and civil rights icon Damon J. Keith of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.

George Humphrey

GEORGE HUMPHREY is a Partner in Holland & Knight's Houston office and serves as co-chair of the firm's Energy Transition Group. He focuses his practice on project development and finance, strategic joint ventures, and M&A, and has over 20 years of experience in the energy industry. George has overseen the development, financing and closing of billions of dollars of energy projects in the U.S. and internationally, including conventional power, wind power, solar power, energy storage, green hydrogen, biofuels, methanol, fertilizer and petrochemical plants, and carbon capture. As major energy stakeholders focus on the transition to electricity and biofuels as energy delivery vehicles and seek to reduce carbon emissions on an ever-increasing scale, George is advising his clients on first-of-a-kind and game-changing renewable, biofuel and carbon capture transactions. He provides superior value and client service through leading-edge legal and commercial knowledge of the conventional and renewable energy industries, as well as the points where they now interconnect as we move to an emission-constrained world. George's honors include recognition by The Legal 500 USA, The Legal 500 Latin America and IFLR1000. He received his J.D. from University of Florida Levin College of Law, and his B.A. from the University of Florida.

Jonathan A. Hunter

JONATHAN A. HUNTER is a partner in the Litigation Practice Group of Jones Walker. He advises oil and gas companies on energy and natural resources-related matters. Drawing on his thirty-five years of litigation, negotiation, and counseling experience, Jonathan guides E&P companies through matters arising under the numerous federal statutes that govern operations on federal lands onshore and offshore. He has represented federal oil and gas lease owners in matters arising in the Gulf of Mexico, the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, offshore and onshore Alaska, and at least a dozen states. He has been counsel in more than 20 lawsuits, hundreds of administrative appeals, and numerous governmental investigations involving the federal oil and gas leasing program, including challenges to the leasing program, regulatory enforcement actions, and qui tam cases brought under the False Claims Act. He is a Past President of The Foundation for Natural Resources and Energy Law.

Alan J. Hutchison

ALAN J. HUTCHISON is a partner in Osler’s Corporate Group. He practices in the areas of corporate finance and securities and corporate/commercial law with an emphasis on mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance, and corporate governance. Alan also practices in the areas of mining law and specializes in the mining sector. Alan regularly advises public companies and securities dealers in public and private financing transactions (both equity and debt), including private placements and prospectus offerings. Alan also regularly acts in takeover bids, mergers and acquisitions, corporate reorganizations and joint ventures. He also advises public companies on general corporate and securities law matters, including stock exchange listings, continuous disclosure obligations and other regulatory compliance issues.

Scott A. Hynek

SCOTT A. HYNEK is a geologist, geochemist, and hydrologist who has been conducting research on the genesis of lithium brine deposits for more than a decade. He received a Ph.D. in geology from the University of Utah in 2011, writing his dissertation on the geology of northwestern Argentina. Before joining the USGS in 2016, Scott worked in industry (IsoForensics Inc.) and academics (Penn State University) and did extensive consulting work within the lithium brine industry. Current scientific efforts in the western United States include collaborative work with the Mineral Resources Program aimed at mapping lithium occurrences across the Great Basin, science support for the recently enacted Saline Lakes Ecosystems in the Great Basin States Program Act, and monitoring and management-oriented-science of salt cycling in Great Salt Lake. Scott also collaborates with the British Geological Survey on lithium brine research in South America via his role on the advisory board of the Lithium for Future Technology (LiFT) project. From 2017 Scott has been the lead scientist on a bilateral capacity building project with the government of Argentina, Sustainable Lithium Extraction, under the auspices of U.S. Department of State’s Energy Governance and Capacity Initiative (EGCI).

Norman D. James

NORMAN D. JAMES the current chair of Fennemore Craig’s Natural Resources, Energy, and Environmental Law Practice Group. His practice emphasizes natural resources and environmental law, including federal laws and programs such as the ESA, NEPA, the Clean Water Act, the Mining Law of 1872, the National Forest Management Act, FLPMA, and the Administrative Procedure Act. His work focuses on litigation in the federal courts (including circuit court appeals) and dealing with federal agencies on regulatory matters, including rulemaking proposals, Section 7 consultation, permitting, and administrative appeals.  Mr. James has won cases that have established important precedents, including National Association of Home Builders v. Defenders of Wildlife, 551 U.S. 644 (2007), and Arizona Cattle Growers’ Association v. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 273 F.3d 1229 (9th Cir. 2001). He represented Rosemont Copper Company in connection with the federal court litigation challenging the plan of operations and related federal permits for the Rosemont Copper Project. Mr. James received his undergraduate degree from Stanford University and his law degree from the University of Utah College of Law.

Cynthia Urda Kassis

CYNTHIA URDA KASSIS is the Global Head of the Projects Practice of the law firm, Shearman & Sterling, and Head of their Mining & Metals Group. She represents sponsors, borrowers. Lenders, and alternative financiers in project transactions worldwide, with extensive experience in the mining and infrastructure industries. She is consistently ranked a leading project finance lawyer by Chambers, IFLR 1000 and Legal 500. Who’s Who named her “Project Finance Lawyer of the Year” three times and also named her among the “most highly regarded individuals in the world” in project finance and mining. Her recent work includes representing Anglo American plc on the combination of its nuGen™ Zero Emissions Haulage Solution (ZEHS) with First Mode Holdings, Inc., a specialist engineering technology company, Nevada Copper on its Pumpkin Hollow Copper Project (“North America Mining Deal of the Year” (2020 by IJGlobal)) and Orion and Blackstone on Lundin Gold’s Fruta del Norte project in Ecuador (“Latin America Mining & Metals Deal of the Year” (2017/18 by IJ Global)).

James T. Kittrell

JAMES T. KITTRELL is a shareholder at Liskow & Lewis in Houston, Texas, with a litigation practice focusing on energy and commercial matters. James has appeared on behalf of clients at both the trial court and the appellate level in venues across the state of Texas. His energy experience involves representing oil and gas clients in a wide variety of lawsuits related to onshore operations, including royalty claims, operational disputes, and other land/title matters. He has also utilized his litigation experience to advise oil and gas clients on day-to-day operational issues, regulatory compliance, and midstream negotiations.  James has been recognized by Texas Super Lawyers as a “Rising Star” in Energy & Natural Resources law for three consecutive years from 2021-2023. Outside the office, James serves on the Board of Directors for the Houston Urban Debate League, an organization which provides access to interscholastic debate opportunities to underserved students in the Houston area.

Bruce M. Kramer

BRUCE M. KRAMER is a nationally known oil, gas, energy, and land use legal scholar and was a long-time professor at Texas Tech University School of Law. Bruce has advised companies on a wide array of legal issues and strategies in the energy arena for more than 40 years. His areas of experience include state and federal laws, as well as regulations and rules affecting exploration, production, and upstream facilities. Bruce is the coauthor of several important books that have become the definitive references for energy lawyers, including two multi-volume treatises, The Law of Pooling and Unitization and Williams and Meyers Oil and Gas Law (since 1996). Bruce’s books and legal articles have been cited as authority in numerous court rulings and appellate opinions, including decisions of the Supreme Courts of Texas and multiple other states, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, and numerous Federal District Courts, as well as testifying before legislative and administrative bodies.

Paige Laborde

PAIGE LABORDE is a Senior Associate in the Environmental Safety and Incident Response practice at Baker Botts in Houston, Texas. She uses her knowledge in environmental biology and extensive on-site incident response support experience to advise upstream, midstream, and downstream energy and chemical industries on environmental and workplace safety matters. She helps her clients navigate the complicated process of adhering to government regulations, investigations, and enforcement and provides risk-informed, practical, and strategic advice. Paige has represented clients in response to investigations by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), U.S. Department of Justice, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the Chemical Safety Board (CSB), the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE), and Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), and state and local regulatory agencies and public service commissions.

Darryl Lew

DARRYL LEW is partner in White & Case’s white collar and international arbitration practices, a member of its global risk management committee, and immediate past chair of its global white-collar group. Darryl's multifaceted practice includes conducting internal corporate investigations and representing and advising US and foreign multinationals, including in the energy and extractive industries, in civil and criminal matters involving fraud, accounting, and regulatory issues, often in the context of government investigations or enforcement actions undertaken by US and non-US enforcement authorities. He has substantial experience in matters involving the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and other anti-corruption laws, including conducting risk assessments, creating and assessing compliance and training programs, performing compliance due diligence and advising on associated risk mitigation in the context of foreign investments and acquisitions, including in connection with issues related to concessions, joint ventures, and privatizations. His global experience and perspective helps clients navigate the evolving regulatory and enforcement landscape.

Caroline Lobdell

CAROLINE LOBDELL is the Executive Director of the Western Resources Legal Center. She has extensive experience with complex litigation cases and contested case hearings. Before studying law, Caroline worked on various federal regulatory issues during an internship at the U.S. Senate Science and Transportation Committee and subsequent employment with former U.S. Senator Fritz Hollings. Her practice is focused on environmental and natural resources law, including agricultural law, administrative law, timber law, water law, mining law, public lands, and oil and gas. Caroline is a frequent speaker on emerging laws affecting natural resource users and has been awarded the Oregon Cattlemen’s Top Industry Promoter Award, Oregon Cattlemen’s Exceptional Leadership Award, the Public Lands Council Service Award, and the Oregon Women for Agriculture’s service to agriculture award. Most recently, Caroline is the recipient of the 2022 Oregon State Bar Environmental and Natural Resources Section lifetime achievement award. In addition to her position as special faculty and serving on the Board of Visitors for the Lewis & Clark Law School, Caroline is the former Walter R. Echo-hawk Distinguished law professor and has taught multiple Indian law classes.

Blaine A. Lucas

BLAINE A. LUCAS is a shareholder and member of Babst Calland’s Public Sector and Energy and Natural Resources Groups. He is responsible for coordination of the firm’s representation of traditional and renewable energy industry clients on land use and other local regulatory matters. He has represented energy clients in obtaining local government approvals for a wide variety of projects and defended these approvals through the appellate courts. He has assisted both traditional and renewable energy industry clients in analyzing the substantive impact and procedural requirements of land use, noise, road, and other local ordinances. Blaine has served as solicitor for boroughs, townships, municipal authorities, and zoning hearing boards, and has represented municipalities as special counsel on zoning, zoning enforcement, transportation, economic development and local taxation issues. He also taught land use law as an adjunct professor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. Blaine has been recognized by The Best Lawyers in America and Pennsylvania Super Lawyers in the fields of energy law, land use litigation and municipal law. He is a graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law.

Patrick H. Martin

PATRICK H. MARTIN is the Campanile Professor of Mineral Law, Emeritus, at Louisiana State University Law Center. Professor Martin taught at the LSU Law Center from 1977 to 2011, including courses in Jurisprudence, Contracts, and Mineral Law. From 1982 to 1984, he served as the Commissioner of Conservation for the State of Louisiana. Professor Martin holds the B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. degrees from Louisiana State University and the J.D. degree from the Duke University Law School. His publications include Pooling and Unitization (with B. Kramer) and Williams & Meyers Oil and Gas Law (update and revision author with B. Kramer), and three casebooks, Jurisprudence: Text and Readings on the Philosophy of Law (with Christie & MacLeod), Oil and Gas Cases and Materials (with Kramer, Hall, Righetti & Schremmer) and Economic Regulation: Energy, Transportation and Utilities (with Pierce and Allison, 1980), as well as numerous articles on oil and gas law, energy regulation, and early modern English history. McFarland & Company, Inc. published his book, Elizabethan Espionage: Plotters and Spies in the Struggle Between Catholicism and Crown, in 2015. Professor Martin has served as an arbitrator, mediator, and consultant in the oil and gas industry.

Vicki Marquis

VICKI MARQUIS is at Attorney at Crowley Fleck PLLP in Billings, Montana. She is an environmental and natural resources litigator with a successful track record in both federal and state courts, including the Montana Supreme Court. She advocates for industrial clients on mining, water quality, and environmental review issues. Vicki is adept at reaching workable solutions short of full litigation, as well as litigating and winning the important issues. She helps clients by ensuring their permit applications are complete and well-supported, then works with the client and agency to create a solid permitting record. She often defends permit actions against third-party attacks, working with the agency to present the strongest defense. When needed, Vicki helps clients challenge agency actions that deny or inappropriately restrict the client’s operations. Vicki also helps clients avoid, respond to, and defend against compliance and enforcement actions. She has also worked with legislators, agencies, and industry groups on new legislation and administrative rulemaking. Previously, Vicki worked in industry as a chemist, in government as an environmental enforcement specialist, and as coordinator for a local government watershed group. She recently retired from the Montana Army National Guard after more than twenty years of military service.

Laura Colombell Marshall

LAURA COLOMBELL MARSHALL is a partner in McGuireWoods’s nationally recognized Government Investigations and White-Collar practice. She advises clients on a wide range of criminal, civil and regulatory enforcement matters. She has successfully defended companies and executives facing high stakes investigations, criminal exposure, and reputational risk. She also advises on compliance issues and has extensive experience managing risks associated with corruption, money laundering and economic sanctions. Laura is ranked in Chambers USA for white collar crime and government investigations in Virginia and was named a National Law Journal Criminal Law Trailblazer and a Benchmark “Local Litigation Star.” She has been consistently recognized for her work by Global Investigations Review, including as one of the Top 100 Women in investigations “who are achieving great things in a competitive and notoriously tough area of law.” Prior to joining McGuireWoods, Laura was the head of the white-collar defense and internal investigations team for an AmLaw100 international firm. She also served for 15 years as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Eastern District of Virginia, handling numerous federal jury trials, and successfully arguing five cases before the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Mark McDaniel

MARK MCDANIEL is a Program Manager at AlterEcho in Lakewood, Colorado, and has more than 24 years of analytical laboratory experience, with an extensive background in sample analysis, analytical support, method development and laboratory management. As a product chemist, he is involved in formulation, hazardous substance assessments, SDSs, claims, efficacy evaluation, reviewing safety for products and product regulatory support. A Certified Professional Analytical Chemist, Mark is an experienced scientist with wide-ranging expertise in regulatory compliance, environmental remediation, laboratory management and emergency preparation/response. He works with clients on issues involving chemistry, product development and product line management. He is currently advising clients including legal teams, states, municipalities, and commercial clients, on PFAS issues.

Nneka C. Obiokoye

NNEKA C. OBIOKOYE is a corporate attorney in Holland & Knight's Denver office, where she focuses her practice on domestic and international commercial transactions in the renewable energy and oil and gas industries. Nneka helps businesses navigate complex commercial issues at every stage of a project's life cycle, from development to day-to-day to operations. She routinely advises oil and gas companies on midstream and downstream transactions and assists renewable energy developers in negotiating project development contracts, such as power purchase agreements, construction contracts and battery supply agreements. Nneka also counsels clients with clean energy projects, including projects involving renewable fuels and hydrogen. Nneka's accolades include being named among the "Ones to Watch" by The Best Lawyers in America guide and Top 40 Under 40 by The National Black Lawyers. She currently serves on Law360's Energy Editorial Advisory Board and in the past year, she served as a Director on the Board of GRID Alternatives Colorado. Nneka received her LL.M. in International Business Regulation, Litigation and Arbitration from New York University School of Law, and her LL.B. from the University of Nigeria, Faculty of Law.

Juan M. Palma

JUAN M. PALMA is currently a Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Senior Policy Advisor on climate change, environmental justice, and equity and inclusion. Formerly Juan was the State Director for the Nevada chapter of the Nature Conservancy and the Utah State Director for the BLM where he provided leadership to 850 employees and 23 million acres of BLM land in Utah. Juan’s vision for collaborative solutions to controversial land use issues gave rise to several agreements that safeguard fragile environments and iconic landscapes in Utah. Before his appointment to Utah, he was the State Director for the BLM’s Eastern States. Under his guidance and leadership, the BLM’s mission and vision were carried out in 31 states east of and bordering the Mississippi River. Since joining the BLM, Juan has served as Colorado’s Western Slope Center Manger, District Manager in Vale, Oregon, and Field Office Manager in Las Vegas, Nevada. He began his federal career with the U.S. Forest Service in 1984, where he worked in a variety of positions including Budget Officer, Administrative Officer, District Ranger, and Deputy Forest Supervisor and Forest Supervisor of the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit. He served as the Executive Director of the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, a bi-state compact agency overseeing regional land-use issues within the Lake Tahoe basin.

Jeffrey Parshley

JEFFREY PARSHLEY has over 40 years of project experience in North America and internationally. He holds a degree in Geology from Dartmouth College. Jeff’s expertise includes mine closure and remediation, mine environmental studies, mine permitting, and environmental geochemistry. In particular, he has specialized in closure planning and cost estimating work including the development of a public domain cost estimating model used by mining companies around the world to prepare closure cost estimates.

Michelle L. Phillips

MICHELLE L. PHILLIPS is the Director of Land at Callon Petroleum in Houston, TX. She has also served as a faculty member teaching Oil and Gas Law, Energy Law, and Mining Law at the University of North Dakota School of Law. She has extensive experience in basins across the United States including Permian, Eagle Ford, Bakken, and Rockies, and Mid-Continent. Michelle completed her undergraduate degree in business from Georgetown University in Washington, DC, and both her Juris Doctorate and Master of Business Administration from the University of Oklahoma. During her years at Shell Exploration and Production and Hess Corporation, Michelle worked in a variety land roles spanning commercial, surface, and mineral. She also serves as the Second Vice-President of AAPL. In addition to the AAPL certifications, Michelle is a member of the state bars of Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, North Dakota, and Montana. Outside of her career, Michelle is very active in her community – serving as Girl Scout Troop Leader; Board Member for the Trinity Health Foundation; and Alumni Admissions Volunteer for Georgetown University. Michelle and her daughter, Ella, are on a joint mission to visit and earn Junior Ranger badges from all 423 locations in the National Parks System.

Karra Porter

KARRA PORTER is an attorney who has practiced in Utah for more than 32 years. She was named Utah State Bar Lawyer of the Year in 2018, and in 2019 was awarded the Litigator’s Cup by the Utah State Bar Litigation Section. To the public, however, Karra is better known as a founder of the Utah Cold Case Coalition. In 2017, the family of a 6-year-old girl murdered in 1995 came to Karra for help. “I’m a lawyer – I don’t know I can help,” she told them. She took the plunge, and now her nonprofit assists families, communities, and law enforcement throughout the U.S. with unsolved murders and disappearances, including opening the world’s only nonprofit forensic DNA lab. Karra went from “Thank you, Your Honor” to digging for unmarked graves, questioning suspects, fishing (literally) for guns, podcasting, and other activities she never dreamed of. Karra will share crime scene photos of unsolved cases her organization is working, talk about why cases go cold, and what her organization is doing to tackle the hundreds of thousands of unsolved deaths, tens of thousands of unsolved disappearances, and thousands of unidentified bodies in the United States today.

Steven R. Rech

STEVEN R. RECH is a partner in the Houston office of Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease LLP and a member of the firm’s litigation group. He has 30 years of experience representing businesses involved in complex commercial disputes. Steve has successfully tried dozens of cases (both jury and non-jury) in state and federal courts. He also has extensive experience trying significant disputes in arbitral forums.  Steve’s work focuses mostly on assisting clients in the energy and real estate industries.

Sunnie R. Richardson

SUNNIE R. RICHARDSON is an attorney and landman with a focus on energy law and energy transactions. She received her J.D. from the University of New Mexico with a certificate in Natural Resource and Environmental Law and her M.A. in Anthropology with an emphasis in Southwest Archeology from New Mexico State University, all of which have shaped her practice. She is experienced in handling energy transactions from start to finish. During her time in private practice, Sunnie conducted title, land use, and environmental due diligence for sizable renewable energy transactions and handled many oil and gas acquisitions from purchase agreement through closing. Sunnie has done extensive title review for drilling title opinions, division order title opinions, complex quiet title suits, and for acquisition due diligence. Sunnie’s knowledge regarding state and federal lands allows her to efficiently navigate both land work and legal work. Sunnie’s work as a landman focuses on mineral and royalty acquisition and leasing of energy properties in the Permian Basin.

Dana Saric

DANA SARIC is senior counsel at Capital Power Corporation, a publicly listed power generation company operating approximately 7,500 MW of thermal and renewable power generation facilities across North America. Previous to this role, Dana was a partner practicing banking and corporate law at a national Canadian business law firm, where she represented assisting clients with project financing and other lending arrangements, long-term power procurements, and carbon credit transactions. Dana writes and speaks regularly on matters of interest to carbon market participants, including renewable energy procurements, the evolution of provincial, federal, and global carbon market mechanisms, and sustainable impact lending structures.

Zev Simpser

ZEV SIMPSER has served clients in the energy industry for over a decade. Unlike many energy attorneys who concentrate on only one or two aspects of the industry, Zev has a truly diversified practice. His experience ranges from counseling clients regarding rates, PURPA, economic development, infrastructure development, municipal relations, electricity sale and purchase transactions, and asset transfers to representing clients in all manner of regulatory proceedings before state and federal commissions including rate cases, resource plans, and interjurisdictional matters. Zev’s broad energy industry perspective is informed by his service as a legislative aide to United States Senator Bob Graham, who he advised on energy, environmental and agricultural issues. Clients appreciate Zev’s multi-dimensional experience because it enables him to more effectively evaluate their legal challenges and develop solutions to advance their business interests.

Juan Sonoda

JUAN SONODA is the Legal Practice Director of Beretta Godoy in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and the partner in charge of the Litigation and Energy & Natural Resources departments. His expertise focuses on the areas of foreign investment, infrastructure international business transactions, energy and natural resources, and dispute resolution. He has represented parties in arbitrations and other dispute-resolution methods conducted under the rules of the ICSID, ICC, and ICDR and has assisted several companies in important and complex commercial litigations. He has published several articles on natural resources, BITs, bankruptcy, conflicts of laws, and foreign investment. He has directed and co-authored a book on indigenous rights in South America from the perspective of the natural resources industry, published by The Foundation for Natural Resources and Energy Law. He is an Assistant Professor teaching the “Civil and Commercial Contracts” course at the University of Buenos Aires. He is also the Professor of Legal Aspects of the Mining Specialization Career at the Universidad de Buenos Aires. Juan is admitted to the Buenos Aires and New York Bars and is an active member of The Foundation for Natural Resources and Energy Law, New York State Bar Association, and the International Bar Association.

Kelann B. Stirling

KELANN B. STIRLING focuses her practice on development and financing of energy and infrastructure projects. She has advised clients on a wide range of projects, within and outside of the U.S., with a focus on renewable power (including wind, battery storage and hydroelectric facilities) and energy transition technologies (including renewable fuels, carbon capture and sequestration, and hydrogen), conventional power, LNG and midstream gas gathering and processing facilities. Kelann also advises clients on matters relating to sustainable financing and is part of the firm’s ESG strategy group. In addition, Kelann has significant experience in restructurings and acquisition financings in the energy and infrastructure sector. Kelann was recognized for her work in USA - Projects in Chambers Global in 2022, as “Up and Coming” in Chambers USA in 2021-2022, as a “Rising Star Partner” in Project Finance by IFLR1000 and as a 2019 Rising Star by Law360. In the 2022 edition of Chambers USA, clients note, "Kelann possesses an acute legal mind, analyzes the most complex issues in full depth and delivers practical advice." "She is very creative, very hard-working and up to speed on the market." She is also recommended by Legal 500 for Project Finance.

Elizabeth R. Taber

ELIZABETH R. TABER is a Partner in the Houston office of King & Spalding and deputy leader of the Firm’s Toxic and Environmental Tort practice. She represents clients in high-stakes environmental litigation, with a focus on serving clients in the energy sector. Her experience ranges from large-scale, multi-party and multi-district litigation to individual product liability and tort actions and from federal courts to state courthouses across the country, including those in the most challenging jurisdictions. Elizabeth was recently named by The Legal 500 as a Next Generation Partner in Toxic Tort Defense, honored with the Texas Lawyer’s “On the Rise Award,” and recognized by Law 360 as a “Rising Star” in Environmental Law.

Heather Tanana

HEATHER TANANA is a citizen of the Navajo Nation and Assistant Professor and Wallace Stegner Center Fellow at the S.J. Quinney College of Law. She holds a Juris Doctorate from the University of Utah and a Masters in Public Health from Johns Hopkins University. Heather is experienced in state, federal, and tribal courts and clerked for Judge Nuffer at the U.S. District Court for the District of Utah. Heather’s research interests include exploring the overlay between environmental and health policy in Indian Country. Much of her work focuses on tribal water issues, from climate change impacts to Colorado River management. She leads the Water & Tribe Initiative’s Universal Access to Clean Water Project. The project seeks to bring awareness to the lack of clean, safe, and reliable drinking water in Indian country and to make tangible progress on securing water access for all Americans. Heather is also an author for the water chapter in the Fifth National Climate Assessment.

Carlos Vilhena

CARLOS VILHENA is a partner at the law firm of Pinheiro Neto Advogados, in Brasilia, Brazil, where he leads the firm's mining and government relations practices. For many years he has given legal advice for various clients, such as major and junior mining companies, governments, industry associations, multilateral and commercial banks, in all areas related to the mineral resources sector, including regulatory, permitting, M&A, land, community and government relations, infrastructure, indigenous populations, processing, sales, tax, environment, power, contracts, corporate, financing, litigation legislative process, risk assessment and policy. Carlos has repeatedly been named as one of the top mining law and government relations practitioners in Brazil by several publications, including the Who's Who Legal, Latin Lawyer, Chambers, and Legal 500. He is the Secretary-Treasurer of the Section for Energy, Environment, Natural Resources, and Infrastructure Law of the International Bar Association, and the Secretary of The Foundation for Natural Resources and Energy Law. Carlos is a director of G Mining Ventures and TriStar Gold. He holds an LLM in Natural Resources Law from the Centre for Energy, Petroleum, and Mineral Law and Policy of the University of Dundee, Scotland, and an LLB from the University of Brasilia Law School.

Clifford J. Villa

CLIFF VILLA is the Deputy Assistant Administrator for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Office of Land and Emergency Management, where he provides policy direction for programs including Superfund cleanup, Brownfields funding, hazardous waste management, and emergency response.  At EPA, Cliff carries out priorities of the Biden Administration centered on environmental justice and climate change, drawing upon new resources provided by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. This spring, Cliff is also teaching a seminar on Environmental Justice at Columbia Law School.  Previously, Cliff served as tenured faculty at the University of New Mexico School of Law, where he teaches and writes in the areas of constitutional rights, environmental law, and environmental justice.  Before joining the UNM law faculty in 2015, Cliff spent more than 20 years as an EPA attorney in Washington, D.C.; Denver, Colorado; and Seattle, Washington.  Among other publications, Cliff is the lead author of ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE: LAW, POLICY & REGULATION (3rd ed. 2020), and author of continuing legal scholarship on environmental justice including Remaking Environmental Justice, 66 LOYOLA L. REV. 469 (2020); and Don’t Blame the Flint River, 52 ENVTL. L. 341 (2022).  Cliff was born and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with local roots tracing back over three hundred years.

Heath L. Waddingham

HEATH L. WADDINGHAM is a partner in Dorsey & Whitney’s Salt Lake City office, where he practices in the firm’s Regulatory Affairs Group. His practice primarily focuses on natural resources transactions, representing purchasers, sellers, borrowers, lenders, and joint ventures with respect to mining, oil and gas, renewable energy, and land use transactions. He has contributed updates to the Energy Law and Transactions treatise and to the Wilderness chapter of the Foundation’s American Law of Mining, Second Edition treatise. Heath’s prior presentations have covered annual mining industry legal developments, hard rock mining title considerations, state mine permitting for hard rock operations, and the impacts of the 2021 Inflation Reduction Act on the United States mining industry. He is currently serving as Chair of the Utah State Bar’s Energy, Natural Resources and Environmental Law Section. Heath graduated summa cum laude from Brigham Young University’s J. Reuben Clark Law School in 2013 and holds master’s and bachelor’s degrees in accounting.

Gerald W. Walrath

GERALD W. WALRATH is a Founding and Managing Partner of Kirby, Mathews & Walrath, PLLC, a larger small firm in Houston, Texas. Gerald was formerly a Section Manager and Partner with another Houston-area firm, and also previously served as Vice President of Project Development, Corporate Secretary, and Counsel for a now-defunct, publicly-traded E&P company. While he has been known to wear many hats, his current practice focuses on operational issues incident to oil and gas exploration and production, and mineral title. He is licensed in Texas, North Dakota, and Oklahoma. Gerald completed his Bachelor of Sciences in psychology at the University of Houston, his Master of Arts in clinical psychology from Sam Houston State University and his Juris Doctorate at University of Houston Law Center. As a double Cougar, he is cautiously optimistic about the University of Houston’s chances in the upcoming NCAA tournament.

Kevin K. Washburn

KEVIN K. WASHBURN is a law professor and the dean of the University of Iowa College of Law. He served as the Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs at the U.S. Department of the Interior in the second term of the Obama-Biden Administration and led the Interior transition team for the Biden-Harris Administration. Much of his work for Indian country has been focused on various land issues on Indian reservations, including restoring tribal sovereignty over rights-of-way on Indian lands, working to restore hundreds of thousands of acres to tribes through land-into-trust efforts, and helping return to tribes thousands of fractional interests in land amounting to millions of acres under the Cobell Settlement’s Land Buy Back Program for Tribal Nations. Most recently, he has encouraged greater tribal co-management of federal parks, refuges, forests, and other public lands in a law review article and in testimony before the U.S. House Natural Resources Committee.

David Willms

DAVID WILLMS is an attorney with nearly two decades of public and private sector experience advising on water, wildlife, and land management issues across the country. Early in his career, David served as a Senior Assistant Attorney General for the State of Wyoming, where he represented the State Engineer’s Office and the Game and Fish Department. In private practice, he advised clients on oil and gas, water, threatened and endangered species, and other natural resource matters. He later served as a natural resource policy advisor to former Wyoming Governor Matthew H. Mead and currently is an Associate Vice President for the National Wildlife Federation where he leads the organization’s public lands and sporting advocacy programs. He recently completed a Robert W. Wilson Fellowship in Environmental Leadership at Cambridge University and is an adjunct professor at the University of Wyoming’s Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources. David resides in Cheyenne, Wyoming, with his wife and three children, and spends his free time hunting, fishing, backpacking, and otherwise exploring the great outdoors.

Jaime P. Zaldumbide

JAIME P. ZALDUMBIDE has been a partner of Perez Bustamante & Ponce, the largest and one of the most reputed law firms in Ecuador, since 1987. He is an experienced attorney in energy, oil and gas, and environmental law. He has spent decades advising oil and gas and mining companies on their operations and negotiations in Ecuador. Thanks to his experience in these fields, he is one of the most well-regarded experts in Ecuador. From 2012 to 2016, Jaime practiced in Chile as Senior Counsel at Carey Abogados in its Energy Department. He has a J.D. from the Catholic University of Quito, a Master´s Degree in Environmental Law from the University of the Vasque Country, Spain, and has conducted post graduate studies at Harvard University, Columbia University, and Southern Methodist University. During his professional career he has served as the Private Secretary to the Ministry of Energy and Mines, a member of the Board of Directors of the Ecuadorian-American Chamber of Commerce, manager of the Legal Department of Kerr McGee Ecuador (currently part of Anadarko). In 2016 he contributed the Ecuadorian Chapter of the Foundation’s “Indigenous Rights Q&A Book.” Jaime is one of the few Ecuadorian attorneys to be distinguished as a foreign expert by Chambers Global publication.