Alaska Leadership Team Prepares Pebble Project for Permittingadmin
Northern Dynasty Minerals Ltd. reports that the Pebble Limited Partnership executive and management team that will oversee completion of a Prefeasibility Study in the second half of 2009, and lead the Pebble Project into permitting, is largely in place in Anchorage, Alaska.
Along with its 50-50 partner, an affiliate of Anglo American plc, a wholly-owned affiliate of Northern Dynasty established the Pebble Partnership in mid-2007 to design, permit, construct and operate a modern, long-life mine in southwest Alaska. The mineral resource at Pebble is acknowledged as one of the most important accumulations of copper, gold and molybdenum in the world today.
Following the appointment of prominent Alaska business leader John Shively as CEO in April 2008, the Partnership has successfully recruited experienced Alaska business professionals to fill most of its senior posts. Mr. Shively was formerly Commissioner of the Alaska Department of Natural Resources, President of the Resource Development Council of Alaska and a senior executive with NANA Corporation – the Alaska Native Corporation that partnered with Teck Cominco in the development and operation of the Red Dog zinc mine.
“In John Shively, we have one of the most credible business, government and community leaders in the state,” said Northern Dynasty President and CEO Ron Thiessen. “John is not only respected for his management acumen, but also for his career-long effort to facilitate responsible resource development that improves the lives of Alaska’s Native and rural populations. His is precisely the kind of leadership this project requires, and it’s a big part of the reason we have been successful in attracting other high-caliber professionals in the state.”
Other notable Alaskans who have been recruited into leadership positions with the Pebble Partnership under Mr. Shively’s leadership include:
– Vice President, Environment – Ken Taylor. Mr. Taylor has worked as a wildlife biologist in the State of Alaska for more than 30 years, most recently as Deputy Commissioner of the Alaska Department of Fish & Game. He spent 10 years as an Area Biologist in the region of southwest Alaska where Pebble is located. – Vice President, Public Affairs – Mike Heatwole. Mr. Heatwole is a long-time Alaskan communications professional with experience in private industry, government and consulting. His resource development experience includes eight years as Director of Public Affairs with the Alyeska Pipeline Service Company.
– Vice President, Human Resources & Administrative Services – Josie Harmon. Ms. Harmon is a lifelong Alaskan, a shareholder of Chugach Alaska Corporation and a human resource rofessional with 18 years of experience in consulting and management within Alaska’s resource development sector.
In total, there are 27 staff in the Pebble Partnership’s corporate office in Anchorage – including Finance Manager Matt McDaniel, Stakeholder Relations Manager Heidi Franklin, Permitting Affairs Manager Charlotte MacCay, Environmental Studies Manager Jane Whitsett, Information Technology Manager Ubon Boutsomsi and Business Development Manager Debi Schmit. In addition to extensive Alaskan experience, the PLP management team includes Alaska Natives and those with professional and personal histories in the project area.
Contract and full-time personnel working at the Pebble Project site near Iliamna, Alaska peaked at 232 this summer. Some 130 individuals from local communities have worked on the project in 2008.
“Pebble is one of the leading mineral development projects in the world, and the Partnership has set commensurately high expectations for itself in terms of financial, environmental and social performance,” Thiessen said. “World-class performance requires a world-class team, and that is precisely what we are assembling in Alaska today.”
Stephen Hodgson, P.Eng. continues to lead the large, multi-disciplinary team developing a Prefeasibility Study for the Pebble Project. Over the course of a 32-year career, Mr. Hodgson has experience in consulting, project management, feasibility-level design and implementation, and mine operations at some of the largest mineral development projects in the world – including the Red Dog zinc mine in Alaska and the Oyu Tolgoi copper-gold project in Mongolia. Mr. Hodgson is directing a dedicated study team of about 20 engineers and technical specialists, many of them seconded from Anglo American plc, as well as 58 leading engineering firms and other specialized consultancies from the United States and around the world.