Lawler will be the second senior executive to leave this month after CEO Bernard Looney suddenly resigned.

Lawler, who has been with BP for nine years, will seek new career opportunities outside BP, according to a memo sent by the company to employees. Orlando Alvarez will replace Lawler

The latest departure comes just two weeks after Looney resigned. In the U.S., where BP has a larger economic footprint than any other country, leadership turnover, recently appointing an interim CEO and CFO, launching a search for a permanent CEO and addressing questions about the board's governance record are among the key tasks ahead for the company.

Lawler, a Denver native, oversaw BP's entry into the Permian Basin in 2018 with its $10 billion purchase of shale oil assets from BHP Billiton Ltd. The operations, which struggled with methane pollution and inadequate infrastructure for the first few years, are poised to become one of BP's fastest-growing oil assets, with a goal of 30 percent production growth by 2025.