Texas Tech University

Prestigious Texas Tech School of Law Alumnus to Speak at Hooding Ceremony

David Gay

May 3, 2018

David Copeland, the executive vice president and general counsel of SM Energy Company, graduated from the School of Law in 1982.

David Copeland

David Copeland, the executive vice president and general counsel of SM Energy Company, will speak as a part of this year's Texas Tech University School of Law Hooding Ceremony at 7 p.m. May 12 in the United Supermarkets Arena, 1701 Indiana Avenue.

Copeland, a graduate of the School of Law in 1982, joined SM Energy, a publicly traded independent energy company based in Denver, in January 2011. Copeland began his career in the commercial, corporate and securities practice areas of Stubbeman, McRae, Sealy, Laughlin & Browder, located in Midland. In 1991, Copeland co-founded the legal department of the Parker & Parsley Petroleum Company, now Pioneer Natural Resources Company, and in 1997, he co-founded Concho Resources Inc. in Midland.

“We are fortunate to have David Copeland address our graduates,” said Jack Wade Nowlin, dean of the Texas Tech School of Law and W. Frank Newton professor of law.  “He has enjoyed tremendous success in the legal profession and is highly respected by all his colleagues. David has long been a champion of the law school and our students. He is a great example for our graduates and is sure to inspire them as they embark on this exciting next step into the practice of law.”

Throughout his career, Copeland has been involved in the negotiation of, and responsible for, directing legal activities related to the consummation of more than $30 billion of energy and energy related transactions, including some in the United States, Canada, Australia, Indonesia, Guatemala and Turkey.

Copeland also is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Texas Tech Law School Foundation and serves on the Energy Law Advisory Board. Copeland and his late wife, Janet Scivally, a 1982 graduate of the School of Law, established the Copeland Energy Law Endowment, the Copeland Fellows Program and the Janet Scivally and David Copeland Endowed Professorship.

In 2011, Copeland was named a distinguished alumnus of the School of Law. 

There will be a reception prior to the ceremony at 4 p.m. at the School of Law. Graduates and guests are welcome to tour the School of Law building beginning at 10 a.m.