Aussie women dominate WIM100

THIS year’s edition of Women in Mining UK’s biennial 100 Global Inspirational Women in Mining featured more women from Australia than any other country.
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Lynas CEO Amanda Lacaze

Women working in Australian mining comprised 17 of the 100, ahead of the UK with 12 and the US with 10.

This year, the WIM100 attracted a record 626 nominations from 60 countries. 

The 100 women were chosen due to their inspiring contribution towards a stronger, safer and more sustainable mining industry.

Eleven of the women featured on the list hold roles in ESG, which WIM UK chair Carol Cable said was striking.

"But regardless of roles, almost all the women talk about the need to modernise mining and point out that mining's future needs to look different from its past," she said. 

"It is no longer good enough to say ‘we've always done it this way,' we need diverse thinkers to be part of the solution and these women are stepping up to the challenge." 

Lynas Corporation CEO and managing director Amanda Lacaze was a notable Australian inclusion, though WIM listed her country as Malaysia.

The former telecommunications executive has brought the company back from the brink during her six-year tenure and was named CEO of the Year in the 2018 MNN Awards.

The number of women working at Lynas has more than doubled under her leadership.

Lacaze urged women to be bold and own their own achievements.

BHP chief technical officer Laura Tyler was another high-profile name on the list, having recently been promoted from chief geoscientist and Olympic Dam asset president.

Last year Tyler became executive co-sponsor for BHP's Jasper group, the internal LGBT+ and Allies group that seeks to change the internal environment and external culture, facilitating inclusion of greater diversity.

Tyler's colleague, BHP head of health, safety and environment Bobbie Foot, also made the list.

Former BHP employee and now leader of South32's global innovation and improvement program, Tijana Bianca, was one of the younger women on the list at just 30 years old.

Rio Tinto managing director, copper & diamonds operations Sinead Kaufman was one of three Rio women globally to make the WIM 100.

Two members of OZ Minerals' Prominent Hill team made the list.

GM Gabrielle Iwanow, who joined boss Andrew Cole on an analyst call last week, and manager studies, Prominent Hill Kate Hobbs made the list.

Hobbs is a member of AusIMM's Diversity and Inclusion Council.

In the human resources space, IGO head of people and culture Sam Retallack, Yancoal group manager leadership and culture Brooke Hurt, and St Barbara GM HR and health, safety, environment and community Val Madsen were recognised.

St Barbara is the only ASX-listed miner to be named as a Workplace Gender Equality Agency's Employer of Choice for Gender Equality, a citation it has received for six consecutive years.

Dauareb Wauthathi woman and co-founder and CEO of Indigenous Women in Mining Resources Australia Florence Drummond was honoured.

The inclusion of Fortescue Metals Group Eliwana general manager Katie Day follows in the footsteps of CEO Elizabeth Gaines, who made the 2018 list.

Energy Resources of Australia's first GM operations, Lesley Bryce, was another operational inclusion.

Among company directors, Whitehaven Coal and Bellevue Gold director Fiona Robertson, and AusIMM president and chair and Base Resources director Janine Herzig were included.

Another two of Base's Kenya-based employees, external affairs manager Melba Wasunna and port and shipping manager Elizabeth Kyalo also made the list.

In the mining services space, CSA Global principal consultant Ivy Chen and Unearthed principal industry engagement Holly Bridgwater were included.

Mining engineer and Shesfreetobe director and female inclusion expert Kristy Christensen flew the flag for New Zealand as the only Kiwi on the list.

"Stereotypes about women in mining can be stubborn but this book shows the breadth of roles and careers women are occupying and the diverse ways in which they enter the industry. WIM UK managing director Alex Buck said. 

"Through these amazing stories, we hope to inspire more women to seek a career in mining, celebrate the contributions women are already making and demonstrate to companies, large and small, the value of diversity to the long-term success of their business for every stakeholder."