Deana Bennett’s practice is focused on natural resource development on public and tribal lands. Deana’s experience includes permitting and environmental compliance efforts under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the Clean Air Act (CAA), and other related federal statutes. She has worked on a number of utility matters, and her experience includes working with renewable resource developers with siting issues on public, tribal, state, and local land. Her work also includes representing wind and solar projects, focusing on state and federal environmental law, permitting, due diligence, and opinion letters. Deana has represented lenders and borrowers in a number of renewable energy projects in New Mexico.
Prior to joining Modrall Sperling, Deana served as a judicial law clerk for the Honorable Richard Bosson of the New Mexico Supreme Court. Deana is recognized in Native American Law at the state and national levels by Chambers USA. She is also recognized by Best Lawyers in America® for her work in Energy Law and Native American Law, and by Southwest Super Lawyers®.
It is not surprising that Deana’s practice areas focus primarily on natural resource development and public lands. Deana calls the West home, from New Mexico to Alaska. Deana’s early childhood was spent travelling in a Volkswagen bus from Yellowstone National Park to Everglades National Park, where her father was a Park Ranger. After leaving the Park Service, her father worked for the Bureau of Land Management until he retired. Deana is a true coal miner’s daughter; her mother worked in an underground coal mine in Wyoming for several years, while her father attended the University of Wyoming. Before attending law school, Deana retraced some of her childhood adventures. Deana worked in Yellowstone National Park, spent a winter working at a ski area in Utah, and spent two summers working on a luxury passenger train in Alaska, where she bought her own 1979 Volkswagen bus. Deana has driven the ALCAN twice in her bus.
Deana earned her Juris Doctor from the University of New Mexico. Deana also has a M.A. in French Literature and a B.A. in French Language, both from the University of New Mexico. While studying abroad as an undergraduate, Deana travelled to Romania immediately after the revolution that marked the end of the Communist regime of Nicolae Ceausescu to deliver much-needed food, supplies, and medicine to families, churches, and communities.