Born to a Persian family in Iran, Nazafarin Hedayati, also known as Nazee Heda, immigrated to Yugoslavia with her father, where she spent a year and a half, before moving to Denmark to live with her other family members. Having been exposed to the oil and gas industries early on when she still lived in Iran, she found herself drawn to chemical engineering because she had not seen very many women in that field. In 1995, she obtained a Bachelor of Science in chemical engineering from the Technical University of Denmark in Copenhagen and during her study she had the chance to work on nitrate, phosphate, and silica storage methods with environmental scientists at the University of Queensland in Australia. Subsequently, Ms. Hedayati began her career as a junior chemical engineer with Kruger Systems AS in Copenhagen.
Continuing her studies with a Master of Science in chemical engineering from the Technical University of Denmark, Ms. Hedayati completed her thesis by working in partnership with Imperial College London. She joined Troy Petroleum Consulting as a reservoir engineer in 1998 and remained there until she came to the United States in 2000. Also in 1998, she co-authored “Mechanisms of Gas Solution Inside Porous Media, Including the Effects of Viscosity on Solution Rate,” which was published in Reservoir Engineering, a journal of the Society of Petroleum Engineers, where she also spent time as the chair of their scholarship committee. She then went on to serve as a petroleum engineer in the division of oil and gas of the California Department of Conservation from 2010 to 2011.
Since 2011, Ms. Hedayati has worked as a mineral resource engineer with the California State Lands Commission. In this role, her duties include coordinating with local, state, and federal agencies; executing regulation policies; monitoring drilling activities; and supporting in-house lawyers, among other tasks. Later, while she was working full-time as a mineral resources engineer, she decided to study law. She passed the notorious California bar exam and, in 2021, was licensed to practice law by the State Bar of California.
Ms. Hedayati has now established her own private practice in trust and estate planning and assisting underprivileged families in different legal aid organizations. In order to keep abreast of developments in the legal field, Ms. Hedayati holds membership in the California Lawyers Association, the Los Angeles County Bar Association and Orange County Bar Association.