Our Team

Atencio Hall is made up of principals Paul Atencio, Chris Hall and Scott McKernan, attorneys who have been practicing law together for over 10 years. We have been providing a variety of legal and land services primarily to oil & gas, pipeline and renewable energy companies focused on land related matters, including transactional, title and operations issues. As the industry has evolved, we have changed with it to continue to provide the highest-level service and quality to our clients, while maintaining cost efficiencies. We started our own law firm to continue these basic tenets to deliver the best legal solutions for our clients.

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Paul J. Atencio, Managing Member

Before co-founding AtencioHall, PLLP, Paul Atencio was a shareholder in the Energy and Natural Resources Group and co-chair of the Land and Energy Title Department at a large, regional law firm. Paul is an experienced and creative problem solver focusing in oil and gas law and assisting clients in the development of oil and gas assets. In his practice he counsels oil and gas companies on a wide range of energy matters, including title, due diligence, title defect curative work, mineral and lease acquisitions, joint ventures, oil and gas lease and leasing issues, and voluntary and forced pooling. Paul also assists clients in their defense of disputes regarding royalty and bonus payments, ownership of oil and gas, and surface use and damage claims. He also has extensive experience providing counsel to clients from a variety of industries on business and corporate law and real estate, transactional and regulatory matters.

Education

Paul graduated from the University of Colorado, Boulder in 1995 with a B.A. and earned his J.D., cum laude, from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law in 2003.

Bar Admissions

  • New Mexico
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Pennsylvania
  • West Virginia
  • Texas
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Christopher J. Hall, Managing Member

Prior to co-founding Atencio Hall, PLLP, Chris Hall was a shareholder in the Energy and Natural Resources and Land and Energy Title groups and was co-chair of the Renewables Group at a large, regional law firm. Chris concentrates his practice in the Oil and Gas and Renewable Energy industries counseling energy clients on title and property development, transactions and regulatory matters. His practice focuses on supporting the siting and development of energy generation projects, and the acquisition, sale or trade of assets, with an emphasis on title examination and curative, property development rights, ongoing operational matters, contractual and regulatory issues, transactional due diligence, and litigation support. Chris has extensive transactional experience related to energy contract matters including lease and easement agreements, purchase and sale agreements, and other industry-specific operation and maintenance related agreements.

Education

Chris received his B.S. in Environmental Science from Westminster College in 2001, and his J.D. from Vermont Law School in 2004.

Bar Admissions

  • New Mexico
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Pennsylvania
  • Texas
  • West Virginia
  • Wyoming
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Scott K. McKernan, Managing Member

Prior to being a co-founder of Atencio Hall, PLLP, Scott McKernan was a shareholder in the Energy and Natural Resources and Land and Energy Title groups at a large, regional law firm. Scott concentrates his practice in the Oil and Gas and Renewable Energy industries counseling energy clients on title and property development and transactions. Scott focuses on the development and siting of energy generation projects, and the acquisition, divestiture or trade of assets, with a concentration in title examination and curative matters, property development rights and issues related thereto, operations, contractual issues, due diligence and litigation support. His extensive experience in transactional matters includes leasing and easement agreements, purchase and sale and trade agreements, and other agreements regarding operations and maintenance.

Education

Scott received his undergraduate degree in mathematics from Saint Vincent College in 2004.  Following that, he attended Duquesne University School of Law to obtain his J.D. in 2007.

Bar Admissions

  • New Mexico
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Pennsylvania
  • Texas
  • West Virginia
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Brittany A. Fox, Of Counsel

Prior to joining Atencio Hall, PLLC, Brittany Fox was an associate in the Energy and Natural Resources, Corporate and Commercial, and Pipeline and HazMat Safety groups at a large, regional law firm. Brittany has extensive experience in the oil and gas industry and represents energy clients on a wide range of transactional matters, including title review, mineral and lease acquisitions, contract drafting and negotiation, due diligence, and curative work. Brittany also provides counsel to clients from a variety of industries on corporate law, real estate, and regulatory matters.

Brittany currently serves as the Secretary of the Greater Pittsburgh Chapter of the Women’s Energy Network (WEN). In 2020, Brittany was the recipient of WEN’s President’s Award for her leadership and unwavering passion for promoting fellow women in energy. She also received recognition on the Best Lawyers®: Ones to Watch list for Energy Law in 2021 and 2022.

Education

Brittany graduated magna cum laude from the University of Pittsburgh in 2008, earning her B.A. in Political Science and a Certificate in Public and Professional Writing. Brittany received her J.D., cum laude, from Duquesne University School of Law in 2011.

Bar Admissions

  • New Mexico
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Pennsylvania
  • Texas
  • West Virginia
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Drew F. Mattern, Attorney

Prior to joining Atencio Hall, PLLP, Drew Mattern was an associate in the Energy and Natural Resources and Land and Energy Title groups at a large, regional law firm. Drew concentrates his practice in the energy industry counseling clients on land and title matters in support of project development and related transactions, including title examination, due diligence support, and preparation of division orders. Drew’s practice focuses on identifying and finding pragmatic solutions to unique real estate title issues. Drew also advises clients on operational matters, transactional documents, and easement and right-of-way issues.

Education

Drew received his B.S. in Crime, Law and Justice from Penn State University in 2008. He received his J.D. from the Gonzaga University School of Law in 2012, where he was active in the Environmental Law Clinic.

Bar Admissions

  • Pennsylvania
  • Virginia
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