Presented by Grant Thornton, Preng & Associates, Citigroup and The University of Oklahoma Price College of Business Energy Institute

Vanessa Gomez LaGatta, 39

Senior Vice President-Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer, Quicksilver Resources Inc., Fort Worth, Texas

Spearheaded Quicksilver’s $1.15 billion debt refinancing and restructuring (rated a CCC+) during volatile high yield market. Key player in the creation of multiple joint ventures and the evaluation, including modeling, and execution of multiple M&A transactions, including formation of JV to develop a midstream company in Canada and raising $125 million.

Career path: Previously worked at Credit Suisse in New York; promoted from associate, to director, in the investment and corporate banking group. Structured, negotiated and executed more than 20 CS “left lead” leveraged loan transactions, generating in excess of $85 million in fees.  

Stepping up to the plate: Entered spotlight early on—under harsh lighting. Company began prepping for filing Bankruptcy shortly after she took on role of CFO. “I stepped up as the voice of the company for the stakeholders, employees and advisors. It was a trying and new experience where my leadership skills were tested and proven.” Grateful to her hard-working team, who played a pivotal role. “At the end of the day, I couldn’t have done it without their support.” 

Old and new: Enjoys how the oil and gas industry brings “together an analytical approach (combining operational excellence and financial ingenuity) to an ever changing, but familiar, and entrepreneurial industry.”

The A’s have it: Upholds the “3 A’s To Success: Amiability, Availability and Ability, in that order.” Founded on principles that “if you are not likable, others will not work with or for you.  If you are not available, you can’t help others (even if they like you).  If you can’t do the job, being likable and available will not be enough in the long term.” 

Look around: Counsels young professionals to: “Work hard—if people next to you are working or getting new assignments and you are not, something is wrong. Figure it out and fix it.”

Audio Interview