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Gary Holland focuses his practice on energy, mineral, and natural resources law, property law, and commercial and real estate transactions. Clients across the energy industry trust his sophisticated and strategic deal counsel to (i) negotiate and handle all facets of mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, and financing related to coal, oil and gas, coalbed methane, and other commercial assets and operations, (ii) lead wide-scale transactional due diligence projects, and (iii) advise on various operational and business development matters, including evaluating appropriate curative measures. Gary is adept in leading and managing multi-million-dollar stock and asset deals and effectively preparing the associated transactional and corporate instruments.

Armed with a practical understanding of his client’s overall business goals, Gary regularly represents (i) coal companies in the purchase and sale of active and idled mining assets and coal operations and (ii) E&P companies in the negotiation and preparation of asset purchase agreements, operating agreements, acreage trade agreements and other contractual agreements, and arrangements concerning the acquisition and disposition of shale assets, leases, and leasehold interests.  Working together with in-house counsel and legal and land departments, clients also seek his advice on day-to-day operational issues, risk assessment, and related business matters.

Serving in his management role as Title Coordinator of Steptoe’s Mineral Title & Property Practice Group, Gary is an Assistant Practice Group Leader and an integral part of the firm’s Energy and Natural Resources Department and energy management team. In addition to Gary’s strong transactional background, he has extensive experience in abstracting and preparing complex coal, oil and gas, and other mineral titles throughout multiple states. His deep understanding of mineral title and property law has provided a practical approach in drafting, reviewing, and issuing coal and mining title opinions, oil and gas drilling title opinions, and division order title opinions to assist clients with strategic developmental efforts throughout the Appalachian Basin.

In addition to his energy department role as Title Coordinator, Gary has held a variety of leadership and project management positions throughout the firm and was a past member of S&J’s leadership development summit for attorneys displaying high potential for leadership and opportunities.

Memberships & Awards

Energy & Mineral Law Foundation
Institute for Energy Law
American Association of Professional Landmen
Southern Appalachian Association of Professional Landmen
Virginia Trial Lawyers Association
American Bar Association
Tennessee Bar Association
Book Award, Virginia Civil Procedure
Dean's List, Appalachian School of Law

Key Experience

Led, managed, and coordinated multi-state large-scale title and due diligence projects and drafted deal documents to assist energy clients with drilling, mining, operational, and development plans involving transactions exceeding $500 million
Represented coal company in stock sale divestiture of coal-producing assets, including pre-closing internal entity reorganizations, preparation of transactional instruments transferring coal and mining assets, and conducted associated due diligence review, and defect curative work
Performed title examinations, drafted corresponding mineral title opinions, and prepared transactional documents, including curative-related agreements, to assist energy clients in acquiring property and leasehold rights for development

Work Experience

2008 Steptoe & Johnson PLLC

Speaking Engagements

Guest Lecturer, "Lease Transfers," Oil & Gas Law Course, West Virginia State University, 2018 & 2019

Panelist, "Rare Earth Elements – Who Gets to Recover Them & How," Energy and Mineral Law Foundation, 2017

Guest Lecturer, "Externship," Appalachian School of Law, 2015

Guest Lecturer, "Interpretive Problems in Oil and Gas Conveyancing," Oil & Gas Law Course, West Virginia State University, 2014

Speaker, "Appalachian Due Diligence," Steptoe & Johnson PLLC Acquisition & Disposition of Shale Assets in Appalachia, Transactional Seminar, 2012

Speaker, "Basics of the Oil and Gas Lease," West Virginia University Extension Service Natural Gas Program, 2011

Speaker, "An Introduction to the Marcellus/Utica Shale Plays," Appalachian Association of Professional Landmen, 2011

In addition to the foregoing engagements, Gary routinely provides in-house client educational presentations and seminars covering a wide range of energy topics. Topics have included:

• Virginia Coal Mine Void Statute

• Declaration of Oil and Gas Notices Application

• History of Virginia and West Virginia Intestate Succession

• Preparation of Affidavits of Heirship

• Recording Requirements

• Oil and Gas Royalty Interest v. In-Place Interest

• West Virginia Co-Tenancy Legislation

• Overview of Purchase and Sale Agreements and Deal Structures

• Coal mining and subsidence-related rights

• Drafting Contractual Documents, Deeds, Easements, Leases, Amendments and Assignments

• Due diligence analysis and curative work

• Comprehensive Coal, Oil and Gas Title Opinion Preparation


Mr. Holland frequently writes articles, alerts, and other commentaries covering a wide range of energy industry topics and issues; representative articles include:

"Kentucky," University of Oklahoma Oil and Gas, Natural Resources and Energy Journal, 2020 Survey on Oil & Gas, 6 Oil & Gas, Nat. Resources & Energy J. 133

"Kentucky," University of Oklahoma Oil and Gas, Natural Resources and Energy Journal, 2019 Survey on Oil & Gas, 5 Oil & Gas, Nat. Resources & Energy J. 141

"Kentucky," University of Oklahoma Oil and Gas, Natural Resources and Energy Journal, 2018 Survey on Oil & Gas, 4 Oil & Gas, Nat. Resources & Energy J. 339

"Tennessee," University of Oklahoma Oil and Gas, Natural Resources and Energy Journal, 2017 Survey on Oil & Gas, 3 Oil & Gas, Nat. Resources & Energy J. 813

"Tennessee," University of Oklahoma Oil and Gas, Natural Resources and Energy Journal, 2016 Survey on Oil & Gas, 2 Oil & Gas, Nat. Resources & Energy J. 307

"Tennessee," Texas A&M Law Review, 2015 Oil & Gas Survey, 2 Tex. A&M L. Rev. 349

"Tennessee," Texas A&M Law Review, 2014 Oil & Gas Survey, 1 Tex. A&M L. Rev. 339

"Tennessee," Texas Wesleyan Law Review, 2013 Oil and Gas Update, 19 Tex. Wesleyan L. Rev. 569

"Tennessee," Texas Wesleyan Law Review, 2012 Oil and Gas Update, 18 Tex. Wesleyan L. Rev. 619