Top Women in Energy Law
Texas Lawyer will recognize Top Women in Energy Law for 2016 at an event to be held in their honor at the Magnolia Hotel in Houston on December 5, 2017. Among those slated to be recognized is Dedman Law's own Chrysta Castañeda '91, partner at the The Castañeda Firm in Dallas.
Each honoree was asked a series of questions and Chrysta had this to say regarding herself and her career in energy law:
Please write a brief summary of your career/background.
I have an undergraduate degree in engineering and a background in oil and gas prior to entering law school. I have been a trial lawyer for 25 years, and for the past 15 years have focused on upstream energy litigation. I represent both operators and nonoperators in upstream disputes. I have also served as general counsel for my clients.
What is one word people use to describe you?
If you weren't a lawyer, you would be…
Name an energy lawyer who you admire and why?
My former partners Mike Powell and Rob Beatty are two of the best lawyers I know. They know the subject matter so well and I have learned almost all I know from them.
What is the most valuable career advice anyone has ever given you?
Read the statutes. Read the contracts. Keep showing up because this is a marathon, not a sprint.
What is your No. 1 survival tip in a work crisis?
Persevere. It will all work out.
What can be done to tackle the energy world gender gap?
Obviously, people in a position to hire in this sector need to hire women at every opportunity. The challenge comes in taking the risk to hire women as the lead lawyers, not just as junior members of a team.
What is your biggest pet peeve related to working in the energy sector?
The booms and busts of the business thin out the ranks of knowledgeable attorneys practicing in this area, just as they do the ranks of geologists, engineers and landmen.
What is your favorite thing about working in the energy sector?
Working with the technical experts. I always learn something new.
What is your favorite thing to do/place to visit in your down time?
Run and watch movies. I love to travel with my family to other countries.