Skip to main content

Colorado Petroleum Council Hosts “Women in Power” Event in Denver

Brian Straessle | 202.682.8114 |

Democratic strategist Celinda Lake and Republican strategist Linda DiVall led conversation with women, about women, and the landscape of opportunity in Colorado

DENVER, June 3, 2015 – The Colorado Petroleum Council, a division of the American Petroleum Institute, hosted approximately 150 of Denver’s most influential female leaders to explore the opportunities that exist for women to work in the oil and natural gas industry. The event kicked off the Colorado Petroleum Council’s “Women in Power” initiative to attract, retain, and develop life-long careers for women in the oil and natural gas industry.

“The Women in Power initiative highlights the many opportunities for women to join and thrive in the oil and natural gas industry,” said Tracee Bentley, executive director of the Colorado Petroleum Council. “There are excellent job opportunities for women and other underrepresented groups in this field. Women working in or interested in oil and natural gas in our region will have a forum to network and share their experiences and insights.”

Democratic strategist Celinda Lake and Republican strategist Linda DiVall, who co-authored a study “Attitudes and Perceptions of Women about Seeking Employment in the Oil & Natural Gas Industry,” keynoted the event. The study found that the largest barrier to women seeking employment in the industry is a lack of knowledge about the opportunities available.

“Women currently make up 19% of the workforce in the oil and natural gas industry, but this booming industry is set to add 1.3 million jobs by 2030,” said DiVall. “Clearly, recruiting more women is critical in order for the oil and gas industry to meet its future workforce needs.”

According to the study, women cited health care benefits, job security, job satisfaction, salary, and good work life balance as the most important factors when considering an employment opportunity.

“Even before hearing any specific information about the industry, a majority of women say they are willing to work in the industry,” said Lake. “And after hearing about the benefits and possible tradeoffs that the industry provides, the number of women interested in a position in the industry increases.”

In addition to this event geared toward women thought leaders, the Women in Power initiative will also sponsor an event on June 18 called Women Rocking the Rockies to explore career opportunities available in the oil and natural gas industry. Women in Power and API will sponsor a third event on June 26 for female students in grades six through eleven meant to spark a passion for science, technology, engineering, and math.

Women in Power is an initiative of the Colorado Petroleum Council, which API established in January of this year to focus on energy priorities in Colorado, including hydraulic fracturing and energy infrastructure, as the state seeks to create jobs, generate more revenue to the government, and produce more domestic energy.

Partnering organizations that helped make this event possible include: Alliance of Choice in Education, Alpha Kappa Alpha, American Association of Blacks in Energy, Camp Experience, College Summit, College Trek, Colorado Association of Career and Technical Administrators, Colorado Association of Career and Technical Education, Colorado Black Roundtable, Colorado Black Women for Political Action, Colorado League of Charter Schools, Colorado School Counselor Association, Colorado Succeeds, Colorado Women’s Chamber of Commerce, Colorado Workforce Development Council, Delta Sigma Theta, Denver Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Escuela Tlateloco, Kappa Alpha Psi, McKenna Long Aldridge Women’s Initiative, Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors of Colorado, Rocky Mountain Energy Forum, Rocky Mountain Pipe Trades District 5, StemsCo, TRIO Educational Opportunity Center, and Urban League of Denver.

API represents all segments of America’s oil and natural gas industry. Its more than 625 members produce, process, and distribute most of the nation’s energy. The industry also supports 9.8 million U.S. jobs and 8 percent of the U.S. economy.