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Oil and Gas Investor

[Editor's note: Influential Women In Energy 2023 is a supplement to the February 2023 issue of Oil and Gas Investor magazine. Subscribe here.]

When Allison Sandlin was young, she dreamed of becoming an astronaut and exploring the unknown. This dream gave her the foundational discipline and determination to succeed in the energy industry.

Sandlin excelled in math and science and loved soccer. This combination allowed her to earn a soccer scholarship to the Colorado School of Mines, where she studied petroleum engineering.

She may not be exploring space, but Sandlin likes to think she’s exploring the earth’s crust, producing fuels that enable space exploration and so much more, while providing valuable energy that improves the quality of life for many.

As the asset manager for Equinor’s U.S. onshore non-operated portfolio in the Appalachia, and with her experience as a reservoir engineer, transaction analyst, strategist and leader, she’s doing just that.

When she’s not exploring the unknown, Sandlin enjoys spending time with her husband, Alex, two sons, Mick and Wes, her mother, Peggy Heeg, and her sisters, Taylor and Madison Heeg. She also enjoys crossfit, supporting the Spindletop charity and promoting STEM to young women.

Blessed with opportunities

“Nothing compares to the satisfaction of working with a group of diverse, intelligent and driven colleagues toward a common goal, and I am blessed to have had this opportunity to work with great teams and projects throughout my career. When you are evaluating an acquisition or divestiture of a company or asset, typically under a tight deadline, trust, dedication, discipline and commitment are required to diligently understand the risks and opportunities of the transaction.”

Educating the population

“I cannot think of another industry that faces the challenges and opportunities of the oil and gas industry. It is incumbent on those of us in the energy industry to lead the transition to reduce carbon emissions.

“Leading the energy transition will require a coordinated effort to educate the population on the science, technology and challenges associated with the energy transition. Solving the energy trilemma of the need for clean, affordable and secure energy keeps me motivated and inspired for the future of the oil and gas industry.”

Inspiration to drive change

“One of the biggest challenges women face in the oil and gas industry is that there simply aren’t enough of us. Women make up 25% of oil and gas employees and 17% of oil and gas executives.   Only one of the 21 companies traded within the energy XLE SPDR have a female CEO. These numbers are quite frankly disappointing, but they also inspire me to be the change.”

A mother’s example

“My mom is an energy lawyer. I am the woman I am today and have the career ambitions that I do because of her. I had a role model in my life from a young age that showed me that you can have it all.

“Nothing compares to the satisfaction of working with a group of diverse, intelligent and driven colleagues toward a common goal, and I am blessed to have had this opportunity to work with great teams and projects throughout my career.”—Allison Sandlin

“When school was canceled or there was an in-service day, she had no other choice to bring me to work with her. I have early memories coloring in the corner of a Fortune 100 energy company boardroom. I remember thinking to myself that all meetings are the same—everyone shows up, the funny guy tells a joke and after everyone laughs, things get serious. Some things never change.

“Having a mom that included me in her career and showed me that you can have it all made a significant difference in my perspective of what is possible. It gave me the confidence to know that I could do it all too.”

A father’s support

“My dad was just as significant a role model. Not only did he support my mom with her career, but he also supported every single ambition and passion that I or my sisters had. He always fostered a belief in myself that I can do anything… His confidence and support are something I will always cherish.

“In 2011, my dad was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease) and passed away two and a half years later… He taught me that love and support is the biggest gift you can receive and the biggest gift you can give.”

Three more things

1. I married my high school sweetheart.

2. My nickname on my college soccer team was Tex.

3. My two sisters are also engineers who graduated from the Colorado School of Mines. One also works in the industry … and, well, there is still hope for the other.

25 Influential Women in Energy

View the full list of this year’s honorees at Hart Energy LIVE.