Welcome to this issue of Mineral Exploration, which is the 50th anniversary of AME’s Buyers Guide! A lot has changed since the first stapled handout to members, but some corporate members included in the original directory such as Archer Cathro, Trans North Helicopters and Teck continue to lead the way by not only utilizing their vast experience but also demonstrating the ability to adapt and strengthen because of change, not in spite of it. See our “Then and Now” article on page 11 that profiles these and other companies from the class of ’68. In this year’s Buyers Guide, we are also welcoming some new corporate members such as Strategic Metals Ltd., Micon International Limited, CTA and GT Gold Corp. We hope that 50 years from now will see AME continuing to provide such a valuable resource that connects our members.
The results of our annual British Columbia Mineral and Coal Exploration Survey for 2017 were officially available in March at the PDAC convention and – along with our partners from EY and the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources – we were thrilled to see the first increase in exploration spending since 2012. The 20 per cent increase over 2016 indicated a $246-million spend province-wide. The survey, along with other indicators, seems to point to an upswing for the exploration and development industry both within B.C. and across Canada. The 2018 survey will kick off at the tail end of field season, so please take some time to complete the survey. The data is used in a number of ways, and one of the greatest benefits is that it gives us the ability to produce facts and figures around the huge value of the exploration and development industry to both rural communities and urban centres all across B.C.
Most recently, AME participated in the Canadian Mining Symposium in London as part of the B.C. Regional Mining Alliance. For this pilot project, the B.C. government, the Tahltan Central Government, the Nisga’a Lisims Government, AME, Dolly Varden Silver Corp., Skeena Resources Ltd. and GT Gold Corp. came together to meet with potential investors as well as high-level executives from mining firms based in the United Kingdom and Europe. We look forward to building on the success of this first event to promote both B.C.’s mineral development potential and cornerstones to success such as relationships with Indigenous communities; port, highway and hydroelectric infrastructure; and access to world-class geological databases.
While you are ramping up your exploration and development programs, we will be working to create the 2018/2019 Annual Work Plan as well as to plan Roundup 2019. The Annual Work Plan will be based on the new 2018-2022 Strategic Plan (see page 9) that was produced through feedback from our committees as well as direction from our Board of Directors, and was guided by a survey (see page 10) that was conducted at Roundup 2018. These results are being used to not only inform Roundup 2019, the Strategic Plan and the Annual Work Plan, but also to guide us in being better organized to serve the needs of the membership. Three very strong purposes came out of the survey and subsequent validation through various committees: networking, advocacy and communications. To reflect those purposes and to continue to improve our service to members, we have restructured the team and added some new energy and faces.
Simone Hill, director of events and membership, will continue to lead our critical networking and revenue generation with her highly competent team, which includes Roxanne Finnie, Helena Tse and part-time and seasonal resources. This team continues to deliver exceptional membership value, including orchestrating Roundup 2018, which was the highest-net-revenue conference to date.
Tracey Sexton will take on a new, exciting role as the director, communications and corporate affairs. As some of you may know, Tracey recently received her master’s degree in professional communication from Royal Roads University. Prior to this major accomplishment (all done while working full time at AME), she completed the Project Management Certificate program at the University of British Columbia. Tracey has contributed to the success of AME over the last eight years in many ways and I know you will join me in congratulating her in this new leadership role.
Aurora Verzoletto is one of our newest AME team members in the role of administrative assistant, reporting to Tracey. Aurora will be sitting at the front counter, taking meeting minutes and welcoming members and guests while completing her duties supporting Tracey and the team.
Jonathan Buchanan has agreed to a new role as well. Jonathan will be the new director, regulatory and technical policy, reporting to the new vice-president, regulatory and technical policy. He holds a BA in geography and has achieved Advanced Communicator Gold through Toastmasters, where he continues to volunteer and mentor. Most of you will appreciate Jonathan as our resident AME knowledge keeper, where he has an uncanny ability to find almost anything in our vast archives. We look forward to Jonathan bringing the history forward into our policy direction on critical issues such as land access and planning.
As this issue goes to print, we are recruiting the new vice president, regulatory and technical policy, for AME, and we look forward to introducing this person in the fall issue of Mineral Exploration magazine and our other communication platforms.
As we head toward the summer, I thank our Board, led by chair ‘Lyn Anglin, and our volunteers on 12 committees for their enthusiasm and support. And I wish you all a safe day, every day, wherever your travels take you.