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The Wall Street Journal: Shell Hires Gale Norton As In-House Lawyer

Gale Norton (WSJ image)

Posted by Peter Lattman
December 27, 2006, 3:42 pm

Royal Dutch Shell announced today that it has hired former Interior Secretary Gale Norton as an in-house lawyer. Norton, who stepped down from her White House post in March, will be based primarily out of Colorado, where she served as the state’s attorney general from 1991 through 1999. At Shell, she will serve as general counsel for the company’s unconventional resources division, which deals with extracting oil from sources such as oil shale and extra heavy oil.

According to this White House bio, Norton earned her law degree from the University of Denver in 1978. From 1979 to 1983, she was a lawyer for the Mountain States Legal Foundation. She also served as a lawyer for the Department of the Interior and was an assistant to the Deputy Secretary of Agriculture. Before becoming Interior Secretary in 2001, she was senior counsel at Denver-based Brownstein, Hyatt & Farber.

Norton’s move comes amid rising congressional scrutiny of the Interior Department’s dealings with the oil industry, specifically the agency’s policies for collecting oil and gas royalties from public lands. The Mineral Management Service unit of the Interior Department has come under particular scrutiny; in December, it reached an agreement on royalties on Gulf of Mexico leases with five oil companies, including Shell. and its sister websites,,,,, and are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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