Download this News Release as a PDF.
TORONTO, January 13, 2016 — The Canadian Mining Hall of Fame will induct five new members at its 28th annual induction ceremony, to be held on Thursday, January 14, 2016, at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel, Toronto. The new inductees will join the 165 men and two women previusly inducted into the Mining Hall of Fame, which was established in 1988.
The 2016 inductees are: Stewart L. Blusson, J. Keith Brimacombe, Robert M. Friedland, Louis Gignac and Harold (Hank) Williams.
Stewart L. Blusson (Born 1938)
Few events in mining history have generated as much excitement or public attention as the Lac de Gras diamond discoveries in Canada’s North during the early 1990s. Stewart (Stu) Blusson was an intellectual catalyst for this transformative event, which led to development of Ekati, Canada’s first diamond mine, and other significant discoveries. Along with fellow CMHF inductees Charles Fipke and Hugo Dummett, Blusson advanced the science of diamond exploration and laid the foundation for Canada to become the world’s third largest producer (by value) of high quality diamonds.
As a philanthropist, Blusson has made generous donations, which combined with matching grants from governments, total $468.5 million. The beneficiaries include UBC ($250 million), Simon Fraser University ($60 million), and Quest University Canada ($100 million), Canada’s first private, secular not-for-profit university.
Blusson was appointed as an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2004. He was also awarded the Logan Medal, the Geological Association of Canada’s highest honour, and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal.
J. Keith Brimacombe (1943-1997)
Major advances in metallurgical engineering and metals processing can be traced to the intellectual prowess of a few giants, and Keith Brimacombe is unquestionably one of them. As a researcher, he pioneered the application of computerized mathematical modeling to analyze and design processes to extract metals from their ores and convert them into useful products. His efforts led to the development of new metallurgical processes and processing advancements that allowed the materials industry to lower costs, engineer new products, and improve productivity and quality control.
Brimacombe’s dream of building a world-class research facility was realized with the opening of the $21-million Advanced Materials and Process Engineering Laboratory at UBC in 1995. In 1997, he became the founding CEO of the Canada Foundation for Innovation, which provides funding for Canadian science and engineering research. He also advanced industry knowledge through research papers, lectures delivered in Canada and around the world, and involvement in numerous industry associations.
Brimacombe received global recognition for his pioneering efforts and tangible achievements, including the Canada Gold Medal in Science and Engineering. He was also an Officer of the Order of Canada and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.
Robert M. Friedland (Born 1950)
Robert Friedland has been a dynamic, transformative force in the Canadian and international mining industries for more than 25 years. The entrepreneur, financier and company-maker is one of the most recognized mining personalities and achievers on the world stage.
With his leadership, executives and companies affiliated with his Ivanhoe Capital Corporation have raised more than US$10 billion on world capital markets to advance a diverse portfolio of natural resources exploration and development projects, and leading-edge exploration and communications technologies, in more than 30 nations.
Friedland’s industry recognitions include Canada’s Developer of the Year (1996) and Mining Person of the Year (2006); Australia’s Dealmaker of the Year (2011); and Hong Kong’s inaugural Mining Personality of the Year (2012).
Louis Gignac (Born 1950)
Louis Gignac contributed to the stature of Canada’s mining industry during his exemplary career as a company builder, mine operator and developer, and advocate of industry best practices. He is best known for building Quebec-based Cambior into an intermediate gold producer and mentoring a new generation of mining talent. Louis Gignac has developed and operated more than 20 domestic and international mines since the 1980s, and continues to apply his expertise to mine development projects managed by his independent consulting firm, G Mining Services Inc.
Louis Gignac has been a teacher and a mentor throughout his career. He is committed to give learning opportunities to individuals through job challenges. Many former Cambior employees went on to pursue successful careers in senior positions in Canada and internationally, a testament to Gignac’s ability to develop minds, as well as mines.
Among other honours, Louis Gignac received the Viola MacMillan Award for Mine Development in 1992, was named “Mining Man of the Year” in 1994 and received a Doctorate Honoris Causa from the Université de Montréal in 1998.
Harold (Hank) Williams (1934 – 2010)
The island of Newfoundland was a continual source of inspiration for Harold (Hank) Williams during his fruitful early years with the Geological Survey of Canada (GSC) and subsequent prolific career at Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador in St. John’s. A GSC mapping program on the island led to his seminal 1964 paper, The Appalachians in Northeastern Newfoundland: A Two-Sided Symmetrical System, which advanced the ground-breaking concept of plate tectonics for the first time. His landmark paper and 1967 geological compilation map of Newfoundland represented the first on-land syntheses of an orogenic belt to be placed in a tectonic framework.
Williams helped establish plate tectonics as a unifying theory for the drift of continents, the evolution of mountain belts, and the formation of many different but ultimately related mineral deposit types. He also inspired a new generation of geologists and helped establish Memorial as a leader in earth science research.
Williams became one of the youngest Fellows of the Royal Society of Canada in 1972, and received many other awards, including the Logan Medal of the Geological Association of Canada.
The Canadian Mining Hall of Fame honours those who have demonstrated outstanding lifetime achievements that have benefitted the Canadian minerals industry. Member organizations of the Hall are the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum, the Mining Association of Canada, The Northern Miner newspaper and the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada. Associate members include the mining associations of British Columbia, Ontario, Quebec and Saskatchewan and the Association for Mineral Exploration British Columbia.
The Hall’s inductees are currently featured at five locations. The original Hall of Fame is located in the University of Toronto’s Mining Building at 170 College Street, Toronto. The Canadian Mining Hall of Fame Gallery in the Teck Suite of Galleries at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto opened in December 2008. Other Hall of Fame exhibits are housed in the Nuclear and Mining Museum in Elliot Lake in northern Ontario, at the Britannia Mine Museum near Squamish in British Columbia and the Canadian Museum of Nature, Ottawa. A new satellite of the CMHF exhibit has also joined a travelling exhibit on Minerals recently developed and produced by the Canadian Museum of Nature, currently on exhibit at the Grimsby Museum. The exhibit will tour across Canada utilizing the Museum’s network of natural history museums and science centres, reaching diverse audiences from students to adults.
More information about the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame and the new inductees is available at the Hall’s website, www.mininghalloffame.ca
For further information, contact:
Becky Bays, CMHF Coordinator