Heather Summerfield is a commercial litigator and former general counsel for a publicly traded oil and gas company. As a result of her unique experience as both a private practice litigator and former in-house lawyer, Heather is able to serve her clients in an effective, efficient, and pragmatic manner. Her clients rely on her to interface with legal departments, senior management, and directors in order to understand and achieve her clients’ commercial objectives. Heather is highly experienced in all phases of litigation in state and federal courts and state agencies, including trials, appeals, and alternative dispute resolution.
Heather has extensive experience with energy disputes and regulation in Texas, Pennsylvania, Louisiana and West Virginia. She regularly advises clients on a variety of litigation matters, including multi-million-dollar lawsuits with working interest partners, oil and gas majors, and midstream providers. She also has handled disputes involving landowners, royalty owners, employment and compensation matters, D&O breach of fiduciary duties, defense and indemnity matters, shareholder claims, environmental and regulatory matters, and bankruptcy claims. As general counsel, she directed her client’s legal strategy in a complex and multi-faceted bankruptcy to restructure $1.4 billion of secured and unsecured debt.
Heather also has significant experience drafting, negotiating and handling disputes under leases, surface use agreements, JOAs, AMIs, participation and farmout agreements, gas gathering and transportation agreements, and gas sales agreements.
Prior to her in-house role, Heather practiced in the energy litigation group of a large global law firm, where she represented clients in lessor and royalty disputes, environmental claims, eminent domain, and land use & zoning matters.
Heather also regularly serves as a director to companies undergoing liability management and restructurings. Currently, Heather is a director for an international company which provides engineering and construction services to the energy industry, an international travel technology company, and a publicly traded retail company. She is also involved in a number of outside organizations in the energy industry, including previously serving as an executive board member of the Marcellus Shale Coalition.
- Duquesne University School of Law, J.D., Magna Cum Laude, 2005
- Bob Jones University, B.S., Speech Education, 1994