Speaker Biographies

Tim Baker headshot

Tim Baker

Tim is Chief Geoscientist for Eldorado Gold Corporation. He provides geological expertise on a wide range of technical and strategic aspects of Eldorado's exploration and mining operations. Tim is a graduate of the University of Cardiff, Wales, and holds a doctorate in geology from James Cook University in Australia. Tim has 20 years of experience working in industry, academia, and government, including research and academic positions at the Mineral Deposit Research Unit, University of British Columbia, and James Cook University, as well as Director of the Geological Survey of South Australia and Exploration Manager of Sovereign Metals. In 2002 Tim received the Waldemar Lindgren Award from the SEG.

Cengiz Demirci headshot

Cengiz Demirci

Cengiz has worked in the mining and mineral exploration business for 27 years, after earning a B.Sc. in geological engineering from the Middle East Technical University, Turkey. He joined Rio Tinto in 1990 and managed exploration programs for a wide range of commodities globally. He completed a Ph.D. in structural geology in 2000. He has been the general manager of Asia Minor Mining Co since 2010. Cengiz has a very good documented track record of discovery (including gold, trona, borate, coal), project development, control of multi-disciplinary projects (including valuations, corporate acquisitions, and financial management), due diligence and feasibility studies. Cengiz is a member of SAIMM.

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Anna Fonseca

Anna earned a bachelor's degree in geology and Russian from the University of Alaska Fairbanks in 1993 and a master of science degree in economic geology from the University of British Columbia in 1998. During the first decade of her career, she conducted regional bedrock and structural mapping in Canada, Russia, the United States, and Mexico for government surveys and the mineral exploration industry. During her second field decade, she shifted her focus to alteration mapping and expanded her geographic range to include the Andes, Europe, and Turkey. In 2012 she joined SRK's structural geology group in Toronto and has since focused on combining structural and alteration geology for exploration vectoring and geotechnical applications. She teaches applied structural-alteration geology courses in four-and-a-half languages to industry, universities, geological surveys, and mineral exploration conferences, both in the field and in the classroom.

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Richard Goldfarb

Richard (Rich) is a research professor at Colorado School of Mines and China University of Geosciences Beijing, as well as a private consultant, subsequent to retiring as a senior research geologist after 36 years with the U.S. Geological Survey’s Mineral Resources Program. His interests and expertise include the geology and geochemistry of gold deposits in metamorphic rocks, as well as the tectonic controls of ore deposits and regional metallogeny of Asia. Rich has served as chief editor of Mineralium Deposita, as a member of the editorial board of Economic Geology, and as a past president of SEG. He is a recipient of the SEG Silver Medal and Ralph W. Marsden Award, as well as the IAGOD Kutina-Smirnov Medal. Presently, Rich serves as chair of the SEG Publications Board and of the SEG 2017 Conference to be held in Beijing.

Greg Hall headshot

Greg Hall

Greg is a geological consultant. Greg was chief geologist for Placer Dome Group from 2000 to 2006. He managed exploration in Western Australia for CSR Limited until 1988. The discovery of Rio Tinto's Yandi iron ore mine and Gold Fields' Granny Smith gold mine in WA are highlights in his career. He graduated from the University of New South Wales in 1973 with a Bachelor of Applied Science.

Peter Johnson headshot

Peter Johnson

Peter has spent most of his career as a geologist working on the Neoproterozoic rocks of the Arabian Shield in western Saudi Arabia. After working with Rio Tinto Zinc Corp. in Wales and Norway, he joined the Riofinex (RTZ) Geological Mission in Saudi Arabia in 1977 to help explore for VMS, gold, and Sn-W. From then until the present day, he has been immersed in the regional geology, metallogeny, and tectonics of the Arabian Shield, compiling regional maps and reports, helping with SHRIMP dating campaigns, making interpretations of aeromagnetic and gravity data, and undertaking fieldwork aimed at resolving stratigraphic and structural problems in the region. He has shared his work through many publications, talks, mentoring programs, and book writing.

Mathias Knaak headshot

Mathias Knaak

Mathias received a Diplom degree in geology from RWTH Aachen University of Technology in Germany (1993) and then worked as a contract exploration geologist at Jundee mine in Western Australia before completing a structural and economic geology M.Sc. degree (1996) at the University of Western Australia. This was followed by several years of applied structural geology, mapping, and mineral exploration in South Australia and southern Africa before returning to Europe. He has more than 20 years experience in the mineral exploration and mining industry in technical and operational management responsibilities with private and ASX- and CSE-listed explorers as well as government authorities. He currently works for the Federal State Geological Survey of North Rhine-Westphalia on project design and evaluation, initiation of new methods in integrated geological mapping, special GIS applications, 3D modelling, and integration of terrestrial laser scanning in structural analysis. He also consults to the mining industry on aspects regarding the tectonic evolution of metallogenic belts, the structural control on ore deposition, and evolution of porphyry Cu-Au + Mo, sedimentary rock-hosted Au, and epithermal deposits in the Tethyan region. One of his key assets is simplifying complex geological datasets to extract underlying patterns, while simultaneously challenging assumptions and models that have often underpinned exploration progress.

Dejan Kozelj headshot

Dejan Kozelj

Dejan is currently the Director of Rakita Exploration doo Bor. He received his Ph.D. in 1999 at Belgrade University. He has 36 years of work experience in copper-gold massive sulfide and porphyry deposit exploration. Dejan worked 22 years at RTB Bor and joined Phelps Dodge in 2004, which was subsequently acquired by Freeport in 2007. He started as a country manager when the company was exploring throughout Serbia, predominantly in Tertiary and Upper Cretaceous belts. He was also in charge of project evaluation in Europe. His current focus is east Serbia, where the world-class Cu-Au deposit Chukaru Peki was discovered.

Yongjun Lu headshot

Yongjun Lu

Yongjun is currently the Senior Geochronologist and Isotope Specialist at the Geological Survey of Western Australia (GSWA) and an adjunct Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Exploration Targeting (CET), University of Western Australia (UWA). He received his Ph.D. from UWA in 2013 and worked as an assistant research professor at the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Core to Crust Fluid Systems (CCFS) before joining GSWA in 2015. Together with manager Dr. Michael Wingate, Yongjun is now ensuring that about 80 samples from Western Australia are dated by SHRIMP every year, which produces a world-class geochronological dataset for WA. Such high-quality data are the foundation for understanding Earth’s evolution and mineral resources formation. He is also in charge of GSWA isotopic programs, including Sm-Nd, Lu-Hf, and O isotopes, which are used to tackle various scientific challenges such as imaging the lithospheric architecture through cover and understanding crustal evolution and mineral deposit formation. In addition, Yongjun is leading a GSWA project investigating the zircon chemistry of Archean granitoids to assess the ore fertility of Archean terranes. Through CCFS and CET, Yongjun has an ongoing collaboration with the Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences (CAGS) and China University of Geosciences in Beijing (CUGB) to investigate the Phanerozoic porphyry copper systems in the Tibetan plateau and surrounding region. He is a member of the Society of Economic Geologists (SEG), the Society for Geology Applied to Mineral Deposits (SGA), and the Geological Society of Australia (GSA). Yongjun is also an associate editor for the upcoming SEG Special Publication 19, entitled Tectonics and Metallogeny of the Tethyan Orogenic Belt, and an SGA councillor for the term 2016–2019.

Aleksandar Miskovic headshot

Aleksandar Mišković

Aleksandar (Alex) completed his postdoctoral research at MIT in 2009, where he experimented on high P-T hydrous phase equilibria and water storage in deep planetary interiors. He served as a diamond geologist with NTGO in Yellowknife, Canada, before moving to UBC's Mineral Deposit Research Unit in 2012 to manage the Western Tethyan Metallogeny Project. Passionate about all things magmatic, Alex surveyed intrusive and volcanic complexes of wide-ranging mineralogies, emplacement depths, and ore-bearing potential along the world's two major orogens: the North American Cordillera-Andes belt and the Eurasian Alpine-Himalayan (Tethyan) belt. Alex specializes in measuring elemental concentrations and isotopic ratios of igneous rocks using a range of (mass) spectrometric techniques. His goal is to incorporate quantitative data sets into petrogenetic models that bear both geodynamic and metallogenic significance. Alex currently explores for polymetallic deposits in the Balkans.

Robert Moritz headshot

Robert Moritz

Robert has been teaching and conducting research projects at the University of Geneva, Switzerland, since 1991. From 1988 to 1991, he was a research associate in the Georesources team at the Institut National de Recherche Scientifique in Quebec City, Canada. Robert holds B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees from the University of Geneva, Switzerland, and he obtained his Ph.D. in 1988 at McMaster University, Ontario, Canada. His main domains of research are ore deposits, regional metallogeny, and crustal fluids. He has trained 46 graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. His projects were focused on porphyry-epithermal systems in subduction and postsubduction settings, orogenic gold deposits, thrust-related hydrothermal systems, Nb-Ta pegmatites, and MVT- and VMS-type deposits. These projects allowed him to work in a variety of tectonic settings, including the Swiss and French Alps, the Zagros belt, the Appalachians, the Andes, the Canadian, Brazilian, and Egyptian Precambrian basements, and in Morocco. Robert’s current research activity is mainly focused on the Mesozoic and Cenozoic metallogenic and geodynamic evolution of the Tethys belt in southeastern Europe, Turkey, and the Lesser Caucasus. Recently, he was involved in a project on the environmental impact of artisanal small-scale gold mining in Senegal. Robert has been an associate editor of Mineralium Deposita since 2003, and he was team leader of the Earth’s resources group on the IGCP (IUGS-UNESCO) board from 2012 to 2016.

Abdul Razique headshot

Abdul Razique

Abdul is a professional geologist with APEGBC and has over 20 years of experience in mineral exploration and the mining industry. Razique obtained his M.Sc. and M.Phil. in economic geology from the University of Balochistan Quetta-Pakistan, and worked as an exploration geologist with BHP Minerals from 1995 to 1998. He was a key member of the exploration team that discovered one of the world's largest porphyry Cu-Au (Mo) deposits at Reko Diq and a series of economic and subeconomic porphyry Cu-Au and epithermal Au-Ag deposits throughout Chagai magmatic belt, western Pakistan. Razique continued working as a project geologist with Tethyan Copper Company Ltd. (Barrick Gold and Antofagasta Minerals JV) until the completion of a major ~300,000-m resource and feasibility drilling program at Reko Diq. In recognition of Razique’s contributions, Tethyan Copper Co. awarded him a Ph.D. scholarship in 2008. He remained focused and obtained his Ph.D. from the University of British Columbia, Mineral Deposit Research Unit, Vancouver. Dr. Razique is currently working as a consulting geologist with Antofagasta Minerals and Vancouver-based junior exploration companies looking at the potential of large-scale precious metal deposits in North America.

Jeremy Richards headshot

Jeremy P. Richards

Jeremy first became interested in economic geology at an early age while on walks with his grandmother across the Yorkshire Pennines, where the dumps from numerous small historical lead mines yielded fine samples of galena and other minerals for his nascent rock collection. After studying geology at the University of Cambridge (1980-1983), he traveled to Canada to complete his M.Sc. degree on Keweenawan Cu deposits at the University of Toronto with Ed Spooner (1986), and then to Australia for his Ph.D. on the Porgera gold deposit with Ian Campbell at the Australian National University (1990). Following a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Saskatchewan in Canada with Rob Kerrich, he returned to the UK to take up a lectureship at the University of Leicester. In 1997, he returned once again to Canada for a position at the University of Alberta, where he resides today. His current research interests focus on regional tectonomagmatic controls on ore formation, and in particular subduction- and collision-related systems. This work has taken him to North and South America, the Middle East, Asia, and the southwest Pacific. A second research interest is in the role of mining in sustainable development, a field in which, as advisor, he has graduated one Ph.D. and three master's students. Jeremy has been a member of SEG since 1983, and a Fellow since 1985; he served on SEG Council and several committees between 2003 and 2006, and has been an Associate Editor for Economic Geology from 1997 to 2001, and 2012 to the present. He co-edited two volumes in the Reviews in Economic Geology Series (volumes 10 and 14), and the Economic Geology 100th Anniversary Volume. He is currently chief editor of SEG Special Publication 16, which will be based on talks given at the SEG 2016 Conference in Çeşme, Turkey, in September 2016.

Nurbike Sağdiç headshot

Nurbike G. Sağdiç

Nurbike G. Sağdiç received a B.Sc. in geophysical engineering from Istanbul Technical University in 2012, and an M.Sc. in geological sciences from the Eurasia Institute of Earth Sciences at Istanbul Technical University in 2015. Her M.Sc. thesis, entitled Geometry and Evolution of the Eastern Part of the Hercynian Orogenic System in Europe and Its Transition to the Scythides, relates to the tectonic evolution of the Mediterranean Region by reconstructing the Tethysides. From 2012 to 2015, she worked on Investigation of the Tectonic Evolution of the Istanbul Palaeozoic, a project supported by the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBITAK) and coordinated by Dr. A.M. Celal Şengör. Nurbike is currently pursuing a Ph.D. at Istanbul Technical University, with studies focusing on the Hercynian orogenic system in Europe.

Mike Searle headshot

Mike Searle

Mike is a geologist who has worked in the Oman Mountains and along the Himalaya, Karakoram, and Tibetan mountain ranges for over 30 years. Recently, he has worked along Burma and southeast Asia. He has published over 200 papers, co-edited five Special Volumes of the Geological Society of London, and written two books, including his latest, Colliding Continents.

A.M. Celal Şengör headshot

A.M. Celal Şengör

Celal is a geologist with interest in the evolution of the planetary lithospheres. He received his B.Sc., M.Sc., and Ph.D. from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Albany. After obtaining his Ph.D., Şengör was appointed assistant at the Faculty of Mines of the İstanbul Technical University, where he later became a lecturer and a professor and where he still works. Şengör was a Royal Society Research Fellow in Oxford, a Gordon W. Moore Distinguished Fellow at Caltech, and the Titulaire of the Chaire Internationale in Collège de France in Paris. He is a foreign fellow of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, a foreign member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, a member of the Academy of Science in İstanbul, Academia Europaea, and the Leopoldina German National Academy of Sciences, and a corresponding member (abroad) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences. Şengör received a number of prestigious awards for his work in tectonics, among which are the Steinmann Medaille of the Geologische Vereinigung, the Lutaud Prize of the French Academy of Sciences, and the Bigsby Medal of the Geological Society (London). He holds honorary doctorates from the University Neuchatel and the University of Chicago.

Ali Sholeh headshot

Ali Sholeh

Ali received his B.Sc. in geology from Shahid Bahonar University of Kerman, Iran. The proximity of the university to the Kerman porphyry belt, one of the most important porphyry-epithermal belts in the world, directed Ali’s focus toward the economic geology of porphyry-epithermal deposits. He continued his studies and received his M.Sc. from the University of Tarbiat Modares, Tehran, and is currently pursuing his Ph.D. in economic geology at the same university. His Ph.D. research—during which he has collaborated with colleagues at Geoscience Australia, the University of Tasmania, and the United States Geological Survey—has focused on the geology and geochemistry of a regionally important epithermal gold deposit in southeastern Iran. Apart from his Ph.D., he has done regional research on Cu-Au mineralization in the Arasbaran, Kerman, Makran, and Eastern Iran porphyry-epithermal provinces. Over the last five years, Ali has participated in different international regional- and district-scale research projects with IGCP and the University of Alberta, and he has investigated many porphyry and epithermal prospects/deposits around Iran. Ali has worked as a senior mineral exploration consultant for major Iranian mining companies, including IMIDRO, MICO, Sadr Tamin, and Takht Gonbad, for which he has evaluated prospects and managed exploration programs. Ali has been an active SEG and SGA member since 2009, and he is now adviser to the Tehran SGA Student Chapter.

Richard Sillitoe headshot

Richard Sillitoe

Richard is a consulting geologist with internationally recognized expertise in the field of copper exploration. After a start with the UK Ministry of Overseas Development, studying supergene enrichment of Cu deposits in Chile, Dr. Sillitoe worked for the Instituto de Investigaciones Geológicas on porphyry copper deposits before becoming an independent consultant in 1971. He is the recipient of awards worldwide. The SEG has named him Thayer Lindsley Visiting Lecturer (1988), International Exchange Lecturer (2014), and has honored him with the Waldemar Lindgren Award (1975) and the SEG Silver Medal (2002) for early and mid-career achievements, respectively. He also has served SEG as its President (1999). The 2012 Rio Tinto-Tinto-sponsored SEG volume on Cu is a tribute to Sillitoe's work.

Chris Siron headshot

Chris Siron

Chris has nine years of applied geoscience research and exploration experience throughout Alaska, North America, and Eastern Europe. Chris has previously held positions with Ur-Energy and the McLeod-Williams Capital Corporation, where he explored for a wide variety of mineral deposits including sediment-hosted roll-front uranium in the Great Divide Basin of southern Wyoming, orogenic-type Au in the Slate Belt of North Carolina, the Kivalliq region of southern Nunavut, and the so-called White Gold district of central Yukon; as well as Carlin-style Au in Nevada; and Cu-Mo-Au porphyry and related skarn, carbonate replacement, and epithermal vein systems from the Alaska peninsula and the Fortymile district of eastern Alaska.

Chris holds B.Sc. (geological engineering) and M.Sc. (economic geology) degrees from the Colorado School of Mines, and is currently a Ph.D. candidate in economic geology with minor concentrations in structural geology and sustainable energy systems at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. His research focuses on the structural and magmatic framework controlling the genesis of Au-Cu porphyry and polymetallic carbonate replacement deposits in the prolific Tethyan metallogenic belt of northern Greece. Chris is an active member in the Geological Society of America and the Society of Economic Geologists, and currently holds a teaching assistantship in the department of Earth and Atmospheric Science in the College of Engineering at Cornell University.

Moira Smith headshot

Moira Smith

Moira is the V.P. of Exploration and Geoscience for Pilot Gold, a junior gold exploration company listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange. Pilot Gold is advancing several sediment-hosted gold properties in the Great Basin and porphyry and epithermal properties in western Turkey. Formerly Chief Geologist, Nevada, for Fronteer Gold, Dr. Smith was instrumental in the successful advancement of Long Canyon, Fronteer Gold's flagship project. She developed an understanding of the geology and controls on mineralization at Long Canyon, and built the geological model for ongoing exploration and resource growth. Prior to Fronteer Gold, she served as U.S. Exploration Manager, Senior Geologist and Project Manager for Teck, managing exploration programs for several high-profile, advanced-stage projects throughout the Americas, including the 5.5 million ounce Pogo gold deposit, now in production; the 1.5 billion tonne Petaquilla Cu-Mo-Au porphyry deposit in Panama; and the 3.5 million ounce El Limon gold deposit in Mexico. Dr. Smith has a Ph.D. in geology from the University of Arizona and is a P.Geo. (British Columbia). She has held board or executive positions with numerous industry associations and is a Fellow and past Councilor of the SEG.

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John F.H. Thompson

John divides his time between Cornell University, where he is the Wold Professor of Environmental Balance for Human Sustainability, and Vancouver, BC, where his consulting company provides strategic analysis and advice related to exploration, mining, and sustainability. John has over 35 years of experience with the minerals industry and related research. He was VP Technology and Development and Chief Geoscientist for Teck Resources (1998-2012) and worked internationally for Rio Tinto and BP Minerals in the 1980s. In the 1990s, he ran the Mineral Deposit Research Unit at the University of British Columbia on behalf of industry. He was a member of the World Economic Forum Agenda Council on the Future of Mining and Metals that completed its term in 2016, is Chair of the Resources for Future Generations 2018 conference, and is a director of public and private companies and not-for-profit organizations.

Albrecht von Quadt headshot

Albrecht von Quadt

Albrecht is a principal scientist at ETH Zurich in Zurich, Switzerland. He leads the high-precision geochronology group and, together with his group, has worked on several magmatic systems around the world associated with metal-bearing porphyry deposits. Systems he has worked on include Bajo de Alumbrera (Argentina), Bingham Canyon (USA), OK Tedi (PNG), Batu Hijau (Indonesia), Bor and Majdanpek (Serbia), and Elatsite and Chelopech (Bulgaria). The team has systematically constrained the lifetimes of the magmatic systems as well as the maximum duration of the hydrothermal events forming the related porphyry Cu-Au deposits. Maximum ore-forming durations of a few tens of thousands of years and lifetimes of the magmatic systems were obtained using high-precision CA-TIMS U/Pb analysis on zircons. The geochronological group uses equipment such as the thermal ion mass spectrometer (TIMS) to obtain high-precision U/Pb ages with external errors of <0.2‰.

Albrecht has co-edited special issues on magmatic processes related to the timing of ore formation in the Swiss Journal of Earth Science and for the Geological Society, London.

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Alexander Yakubchuk

Alexander has been a Director of Exploration at Orsu Metals Corporation since 2008. He received his Ph.D. in 1990 from Moscow State University, with studies focusing on Kazakhstan. He then became an Associate Professor at the same university until 1994, when he moved to international exploration. During his career, he has explored in Eurasia and many countries worldwide. He previously worked for Gold Fields, BHP Minerals, and consulted for Norilsk Nickel, Goldcorp, Rio Tinto, World Bank, and Inco. Alexander won third prize in the Goldcorp Challenge in 2001 and was in the top 20 during the Integra Gold Challenge in 2016. His geological interests include tectonics and metallogeny of precious and base metals, with a particular focus on the metallogeny of northern Eurasia.

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Lukas Zürcher

Lukas is a research geologist with the U.S. Geological Survey in Tucson, Arizona. He received a B.S. degree in geological engineering from the Colorado School of Mines (1985) and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in geosciences from the University of Arizona in (1994 and 2002, respectively). He worked as an exploration and consulting geologist for the mining industry in Mexico, Cote d’Ivoire, Bolivia, Argentina, and the United States (1985-2010), as a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Lunar and Planetary Sciences (2002-2005), and as Manager of the Lowell Program in Economic Geology (2002–2011) at the University of Arizona before joining the USGS in 2011. He has 30 years of combined industry, academic, and government experience in geologic, alteration, and mineralization mapping, structural geology, igneous and hydrothermal geochemistry, statistical methods, mineral economics, and GIS-based favorability mapping. His research has included local- to regional-scale geologic, geochemical, and metallogenic studies of porphyry, skarn, impact-generated, and IOCG hydrothermal systems, and comparative analyses of favorability mapping methods. With the USGS, he has contributed to the porphyry copper resource assessments of Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean, and the central Tethys region; and the Conduit-type Ni-Cu-PGM assessment of the Mid-Continent Rift.