Mining industry consultant Alice Clark has been elected the first female president in the 117-year history of The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (AusIMM), which represents more than 10,000 professional members in the global minerals industry.
Alice Clark, who will take up her new role in January 2011, has worked in the minerals industry for 25 years in a range of roles in both small and large companies. Prior to setting up an international consultancy in 2002 specializing in the assessment of exploration and mining activities, she was chief geologist at the Mount Isa copper-silver-lead-zinc operations.
She is a director of AusIMM and deputy chair of the Joint Ore Reserves Committee (JORC), which sets the standards for reporting exploration results, mineral resources and ore reserves to the Australian Securities Exchange and the New Zealand Stock Exchange.
In her acceptance speech she noted the importance of self-regulation and the maintenance of high professional standards in the mining industry.
“The AusIMM Code of Ethics and the JORC and VALMIN Codes are at the core of the institute and professionalism. I am particularly passionate about our institute’s codes, their effective application, and communication of their importance within the institute and to the broader industry and the community.”
Current AusIMM president Greg Chalmers said that in appointing a leader with extensive commercial experience and a longstanding dedication to continual improvement of professional practices, the institute had shown that professionalism remained its core value.
“Like our industry as a whole and the Australian communities who rely on mining for their well-being, the Board and members of The AusIMM face many challenges and we have enormous confidence in Alice as someone who will capably represent our members to governments and the community.”
Alice Clark says she is very concerned at the potential impact of the Australian government’s Resources Super Profits Tax on the mining industry and the broader economy.
“As a long term resident of the mining town of Mt Isa, it is clear that the super tax will have complex and lasting impacts on our community.
“Companies have already wound-back or cancelled exploration programs and are reviewing future mining investment. This will not only reduce the employment prospects for professional geologists, mining engineers and metallurgists, but all employees in mining operations and support industries.
“Fewer mining jobs in these centres will translate into fewer jobs in engineering, retailing, accommodation, travel – in fact, every area of business activity. This is the human side of the impact of a government decision which was taken with no consultation and with little regard to the macro or micro economic impacts.”

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