Energy Law

Career Paths for Young Attorneys in the Energy Sector

Law School Symposium


Houston, Texas, USA

Past Event

South Texas College of Law
1303 San Jacinto Street
Houston, Texas 77002-7006

Online registration is closed.  Please bring the completed registration form to the door. 

Registrar: +1.972.244.3404
IEL: +1.972.244.3421
Fax: +1.972.244.3401


Presented by the Institute for Energy Law and South Texas College of Law/Houston

This annual symposium follows a career theme for new law graduates and young attorneys interested in working in the energy industries. Symposium topics will include the outlook for oil and gas careers, working as an oil and gas attorney, working as a landman, becoming a negotiator, and regulatory and compliance opportunities, all addressed by senior industry and law firm professionals donating part of their weekend to helping new graduates.  A panel of employer experts will conclude the symposium by addressing key skill sets necessary for success, with particular consideration being given to the vast majority of graduates who happen not to be in the top 10% of their class.

Enhanced informal networking opportunities will be available during the symposium where attendees will be able to talk with the industry participants one-to-one or in small groups.

Download the Brochure (pdf)

For more details, download the online brochure.

Conference Co-Chairs

  • Patrick A. Dunn, Associate General Counsel, EDF Trading Resources, LLC, Austin, Texas
  • Chris Kulander, Visiting Associate Professor of Law, Director of the Oil and Gas Law Institute, South Texas College of Law, Of Counsel, Haynes and Boone, LLP, Houston, Texas

Schedule and Faculty

Friday, March 27

9:00 am-4:00 pm

Field Trip - Energy Trading Floor and Pipeline Hub
Enterprise Products Partners L.P.

Registration for the field trip is currently full.  If you select the option on the registration form, you will be placed on a waiting list and contacted when a spot becomes available. 

6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Welcome Reception
South Texas College of Law
Emilie Slohm Dining Room
6th Floor, Library

Saturday, March 28

8:30 am

Registration and light breakfast (Atrium, Garrett-Townes Hall)

9:00 am


9:10 am

Outlook for Legal Careers in the Energy Sector
  • John E. Olson, CFA, Managing Partner Emeritus, Houston Energy Partners, Houston, Texas
  • Susan Pye, Founder and President, Pye Legal Group

9:25 am

The Oil & Gas and Energy Attorney

This panel will cover a range of oil & gas legal careers including mineral examination; upstream, midstream and downstream transactions; oil & gas litigation; and procurement.


  • David Sweeney, Of Counsel, K&L Gates


  • Mary Frances Edmonds, Assistant General Counsel, The Williams Companies (Midstream)
  • Paul McBride, Corporate Counsel, EDF Trading North America, LLC (Energy Trading)
  • Daniel D. Droog, Senior Counsel, Chevron Global Upstream & Gas
  • Marty Thompson, Senior Counsel, Hess Corporation (Litigation)
  • Chase Ritter, Partner, Munson & Ritter (Title)

10:15 am


10:30 am

The Petroleum Land Manager and Land Administrator

This panel will address mineral title review, land negotiation and transactional work of in-house landmen and the private contractor landman/broker as well as the administrative responsibilities of the land administration professional.


  • Patrick A. Dunn, Associate General Counsel, EDF Trading Resources, LLC


  • Stephanie A. Williams, Land Team Lead, Chevron North America E&P Co.
  • Scott Challburg, Senior Landman, W&T Offshore
  • Scott Grifo, Vice President Land, Nadel and Gussman Permian, LLC

11:30 am

Networking Luncheon

12:30 pm

Breakout Sessions with the Presenters

1:30 pm

International Petroleum Transactions and Global Negotiations

This panel will provide a broad overview of working on international energy transactions.


  • Harry Sullivan, Dallas


  • David Sweeney, Of Counsel, K&L Gates
  • Sergio Limardo, Senior Negotiations and Contract Analyst, Repsol
  • Benedict “Ben” Kirchner, Of Counsel, Steptoe & Johnson
  • William “Hunt” Buckley, Partner & AIPN member, Mexico City, Haynes & Boone, LLP

2:15 pm

Compliance and Regulatory Professionals

This panel will address key compliance and regulatory roles within major oil & gas and energy companies for the following compliance and regulatory functions: Legal/Regulatory Compliance; Health Safety and Environmental Compliance; Contract Compliance; gas regulation, conservation practice and environmental regulation of oil & gas operations.


  • Christopher S. Kulander, Ph.D., Director, Oil & Gas Law Institute STCL and Of Counsel, Haynes & Boone, LLP


  • John Sardar, Chief Compliance Officer, Noble Energy
  • Paige Locket, Manager Regulatory Affairs, Compliance
  • L. Poe Leggette, Partner, Baker & Hostetler LLP

3:45 pm

How to Get a Job

This panel will address key skill sets that employers are looking for as well as traditional and non-traditional entry points into the legal energy, even for those who are not at the top of the class.


  • Susan Pye, Founder and President, Pye Legal Group


  • Rick Burleson, Managing Partner, Burleson LLP
  • Becky Wagstaff, General Manager of Land, Chevron
  • Aaron Carlson, Associate General Counsel and Assistant Secretary, Noble Energy
  • Jason Newman, Partner, Baker Botts
  • Brandon Barchus, Partner, Faulk Barchus PLLC

Audience Q&A

4:45 pm

Concluding Remarks

  • Harry Sullivan, Chair, IEL Academic Outreach Committee 

4:50 pm


Overnight Accommodations

Residence Inn Houston Downtown
904 Dallas Street, Houston, TX 77002

Rate per night: $119 + occupancy tax

Sponsorship Opportunities

Gold Level (Reception) ($2,500 each)

  • Recognition in eBlasts & web announcements, which emailed to several thousand interested counsel and business leaders.
  • Company/firm logo prominently displayed on the Program & Poster and Agenda.
  • Recognition on the Program website
  • Unlimited guests at the reception
  • 3 guests at the networking luncheon
  • An opportunity to display company/firm materials at the event or at the program.

Silver Level ($1,000 each)

  • Recognition in eBlasts & web announcements, which emailed to several thousand interested counsel and business leaders.
  • Company/firm logo displayed on the Program Poster and Agenda.
  • Recognition on the Program website
  • 2 complimentary registrants at the program
  • Up to 2 guests at the reception

Other Information

Nondiscriminatory Policy

The Center for American and International Law does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, age, disability, veteran status or any other protected status in educational activities, scholarship programs or admissions.

Privacy Policy

We do not sell or rent information to any outside parties. By providing your information, you will receive postal and electronic communications from the Institute for Energy Law (IEL) of The Center for American and International Law (CAIL) in accordance with CAIL's Privacy Policy. If we co-sponsor a program with another organization, information may be shared between the parties. All such co-sponsors will be identified on the event details and registration page. At any point, you can opt-out or unsubscribe by selecting either link at the bottom of each email or call us at 972.244.3400.

Sponsor an Event

Presented by

Gold Sponsor