Alumni of the University of Virginia School of Law are spread across the energy sector, from oil and gas to wind and solar power. The network of graduates is strong within companies like Chevron, Longroad and Dominion.
John Ale ’79
Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary, Southwestern Energy Co.
- Chief legal and compliance officer of fourth-largest producer of natural gas in Lower 48 states.
- Served as vice president and general counsel of Occidental Petroleum Corp.
- Former partner and head of Houston office for Skadden.
- Former partner and head of London office, Vinson & Elkins.
- Clerked for U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren E. Burger and Judge Edward Allen Tamm, U.S. Court of Appeals for D.C. Circuit.
Michael Alvarez ’80
Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer, Longroad Energy
- Responsible for managing operations, asset management, construction, human resources, IT and facilities activities for a renewable energy developer.
- Former president and chief financial officer of First Wind, an independent North American wind energy company focused on utility-scale wind energy projects, sold to SunEdison in 2015.
- Project director for development of $2.3 billion, 1,700-kilometer TransCaspian natural gas pipeline for PSG International in London.
- Partner with San Francisco law firm Thelen, Marrin, Johnson & Bridges.
Carlos M. Brown ’99
Vice President and General Counsel, Dominion Energy Inc.
- Leads law department at country’s fourth-largest (by market cap) combined electric and gas energy company with more than 50 lawyers responsible for all state and federal regulatory representation, litigation, commercial transactions, and merger and acquisition representation.
- Closed more than $20 billion in securities capital market and mergers and acquisitions transactions.
- Served as Dominion’s director of alternative energy business development and as director of fleet of seven power plants.
- By age of 30, co-founded Virginia’s second-largest minority-owned transactional law firm, Brown Martin
- Appointed by Virginia governors to the Commonwealth Transportation Board, the Board of Visitors of Christopher Newport University and the Virginia Small Business Advisory Board, and to transition teams.
Robert Burke ’87
Executive Vice President and General Counsel, Aries Clean Energy
- General counsel for energy companies focused on thermal and renewable electric generation and energy distribution within U.S., Latin America and Europe.
- Served in leadership positions in a broad spectrum of energy companies, including Edison Mission Energy, PPL Global, Competitive Power Ventures and Vogt Power International.
- Practice has encompassed mergers and acquisitions, power and infrastructure developments, and project financings.
- Managed corporate governance, government affairs, and compliance on behalf of multinational companies, and has served on boards of private and publicly traded companies headquartered in U.S. and abroad.
Christine “Chris” Levering Cavallo ’95
San Ramon, Calif.
Assistant Secretary and Managing Counsel, Chevron Corp.
- As a member of Chevron’s Corporate Governance department, has responsibility for supporting corporate secretary and chief governance officer in providing legal advice to the boards, board committees, executive leadership, and business units in areas of corporate and securities law and corporate governance.
- Served in multiple legal positions, including as group vice president, associate general counsel and assistant secretary for Polycom Inc. for more than 11 years.
Patrick Conlon ’83
Executive Counsel — Corporate Litigation and Investigations, Exxon Mobil Corp.
- Responsible for a varied docket of litigation matters for Exxon Mobil, including climate change litigation, Alien Tort Statute and Foreign Corrupt Practices Act matters.
- After graduation, served in Manhattan District Attorney’s Office. Later became deputy bureau chief, supervising attorneys in Special Investigations and serving as first chair in more than 40 felony jury trials.
Tom Denison ’86
Laguna Beach, Calif.
Managing Partner, RNS Capital Partners
- For the past 10 years, has served as managing partner of closely held private equity firm RNS Capital Partners, investors in energy and technology companies, and served as a board member or executive chairman on several private companies in clean tech and technology industry.
- Worked his way through college doing title work for Holland & Hart in oil and gas field.
- Partner with Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, specializing in private equity and mergers and acquisitions in energy field.
- Served as managing director and general counsel of First Reserve Corp., a private equity firm specializing in energy industry, participating in deals from coal mining to hydrogen tank manufacturers.
- More than 10 years teaching short courses at the Law School.
Thomas F. Farrell II ’79
Chairman, President and CEO, Dominion Energy Inc.
- Formerly executive vice president and chief operating officer of Dominion.
- Presiding director of Altria Group Inc. and a member of the board of AEGIS Security Insurance Co.
- Former member and rector of the University of Virginia Board of Visitors, and former chairman of Governor’s Commission on Higher Education.
Chris Hayes ’06
Senior Counsel, Chevron Asia South Ltd.
- Provides legal advice related to Chevron assets in Myanmar, China, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand.
- Served four years as lead counsel for Chevron’s global drilling and completions function.
- Chairman of the Chevron Law Function Diversity Council for four years.
Euclid Irving ’76
Managing Principal, Blue Energy Alliance
- Developer of integrated solar cell and energy storage power projects for commercial and industrial customers.
- Focused on a variety of projects in U.S. and abroad, and in oversight of power supply, risk, financing and other issues facing electric utility industry.
- Served as a partner with Paul Hastings’ financial services practice group, and as a partner at Mudge Rose.
- Formerly of counsel with Jones Day’s energy group.
- Serves on board of Green Mountain Power Corp., an electric utility and subsidiary of GazMetro.
Vanessa Kwong ’06
Counsel, Longroad Energy
- Responsible for all aspects of project development, finance, mergers and acquisitions, asset management, and operations and maintenance for renewable projects at Longroad under Michael Alvarez ’80.
- Began career at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, focusing on project finance and development.
- Recently closed sale, financing and start of construction of largest solar project in Texas.
Amy Lincoln ’02
San Ramon, Calif.
Supervising Counsel, Environmental & Safety Law Group, Chevron Corp.
- As the lead safety and environmental lawyer for Chevron’s Downstream, Chemicals and Midstream division, has responsibility for providing environmental and safety legal advice to company’s refining, petrochemical manufacturing, and fuels sales and marketing divisions worldwide.
- Received Chairman’s Award, one of the company’s highest honors, in 2018 as part of the team that represented the company in the 2017 legislative renewal of California’s Greenhouse Gas Cap-and-Trade Program.
Lars Norell ’98
Managing Partner, Altus Power Management
- Clean energy investor with a focus on building and growing ventures in the clean energy markets, primarily in solar power.
- Founder and president of Altus Power, an investment company that has grown to become one of the largest platforms in the U.S. for originating, funding and managing distributed generation solar energy assets.
- Served as a partner at Cohen & Co., running the alternative asset and capital markets groups.
- Ran a structured credit desk at Bank of America Merrill Lynch after spending several years at Credit Suisse.
R. Hewitt Pate ’87
San Ramon, Calif.
Vice President and General Counsel, Chevron Corp.
- As Chevron’s chief legal officer since 2009, directs worldwide legal affairs and serves on Executive Committee.
- Long-time partner at Hunton & Williams in Washington, D.C., where he headed the firm’s global competition practice.
- Served as assistant attorney general for the Antitrust Division, U.S. Department of Justice, and deputy assistant attorney general.
- Taught as Ewald Distinguished Professor of Law at the Law School in 1999.
- Clerked for U.S. Supreme Court Justices Anthony M. Kennedy and Lewis F. Powell Jr., and for Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III ’72.
Shannon O. Pierce ’01
Vice President for Operations, Nicor Gas, the largest subsidiary of Southern Co. Gas
- Provides strategic leadership and direction for the company’s Illinois natural gas operations.
- Served as vice president of external affairs for the southern operations division, responsible for regulatory and governmental affairs for Atlanta Gas Light, Chattanooga Gas and Florida City Gas.
Kwame K. Satchell ’94
Supervising Counsel, Organizational Capability, Chevron Corp.
- Oversees programming related to the development and training of legal professionals and leads the law function’s diversity and inclusion efforts.
- Served as a 2013 Leadership Council on Legal Diversity Fellow and former chair of Chevron’s Law Function Diversity Council.
- Previously led Chevron’s Law Academy team and the Financial and Commercial Services Group in Houston, and led the San Joaquin Valley Business Unit legal team in Bakersfield, Calif.
Christopher Ray ’95
Advisory Partner, NGP Energy Capital Management
- Has held various roles at NGP Energy Capital Management, which has a family of private equity investment funds with over $20 billion of cumulative equity commitments organized to make direct investments in the energy sector.
- Joined NGP first as general counsel, then became a managing director, and later joined the firm’s Executive Committee. In those roles, provided legal counsel, investment opportunity evaluation, transaction structuring, negotiation and execution, portfolio management and investment monitoring, and firm management.
Carolyn Tillman ’84
Managing Counsel, Occidental Oil and Gas Corp.
- Supports multiple aspects of both domestic and international oil and gas operations.
- Provides legal support for commercial transactions, intellectual property projects, regulatory matters, ethical business conduct compliance and antitrust compliance.
- International practice includes short- and long-term assignments in United Arab Emirates, Libya, Oman and Qatar.
- Experienced the “Arab Fall” firsthand while living and working in Libya when the civil war started in 2011.
Katherine Beury Valdelievre ’09
Real Estate Counsel, Apex Clean Energy
- Drafts and negotiates leases, easements, purchase agreements and deeds for developing commercial scale wind and solar energy projects in multiple states.
- Negotiates real estate provisions of purchase and sale agreements for sale of wind and solar energy projects, and crossing agreements with oil and gas companies and utilities in preparation for financing and sale of such projects.
- Acted as lead real estate counsel in construction financing, tax equity financing, and sale of a majority interest in a 217-megawatt renewable energy portfolio consisting of two wind energy projects located in Floyd County, Texas, and a solar project located on U.S. Army Garrison Fort Hood.
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