James Passin is a hedge fund and private equity fund manager with 17 years of experience in investing in mining and exploration companies around the world, as well as originating and developing mining and exploration projects. Mr. Passin joined New York-based Firebird Management LLC in 1999 and subsequently co-founded Firebird Global Fund, Firebird Global Fund II, Firebird Mongolia Fund, and Firebird New Mongolia Fund; in his capacity as an investment manager, Mr. Passin structured over $340 million of investment into exploration and mining companies. Mr. Passin led the successful restructuring and expansion of the Sharyn Gol producing thermal coal mine in Mongolia.
Mr. Passin is a graduate of St. John’s College, where he majored in philosophy and classical literature; Mr. Passin is also a Chartered Market Technician and member of the Market Technicians Association. Serving or having served on the boards of various public companies in Canada, London, the USA, and Mongolia, Mr. Passin is experienced in overseeing the management of publicly traded companies. Mr. Passin is a recipient of the Mining Sector 90-Year Anniversary Honorary Medal from the Mongolian government and was awarded the Honorary Medal from Khentii Aimag, Mongolia; Mr. Passin was also named “Fund Manager of the Year” at the 2012 Mines and Money Conference in Hong Kong.
Mr. Winston is the former Chairman and CEO of Harry Winston Inc. Mr. Winston, the son of the founder of Harry Winston, who was known as the “King of Diamonds”, joined Harry Winston Inc. in 1965 and led the company’s expansion from two stores into a global luxury jewelry and watch business. Mr. Winston has deep experience in mineral exploration, diamond mining, rough diamond trading, diamond manufacturing, and diamond sales and holds or has held executive and board roles in both large and development stage companies. Mr. Winston is also an accomplished inventor, holding a number of patents, including patents related to diamonds. Mr. Winston served on the President’s Committee on the National Medal of Science under President Ronald Reagan.
Mr. Milewski has spent his career in various aspects of the mining industry, including as a company director, advisor, founder and investor. Anthony has managed numerous mining investments at various stages of development, including exploration, development, production and turnaround situations. He has served as a director of both public and private companies and has been seconded as interim CEO on multiple occasions. Anthony previously worked at Firebird Management in New York, where he focused on mining and natural resources, Renaissance Capital and Skadden, Arps in Moscow, where he focused on advisory and transactional work in metals & mining and oil & gas. Anthony holds a B.A. in Russian history from Brigham Young University, an M.A. in Russian and Central Asian Studies from the University of Washington, and a J.D. from the University of Washington. He holds an LLM in Corporate Finance from the Russian Academy of Sciences.
Mr. Doyle's experience includes managing and conducting numerous diamond projects and mineral exploration programs over the past 30 years. Most significantly he led the team that discovered and evaluated the multi-billion dollar Diavik Diamond mine in NT, Canada which he followed through to build and production. As Exploration Manager North American Diamonds for Rio Tinto PLC for 13 years he had a record of continuous kimberlite discovery (over 100) and established an ISO9000 diamond exploration laboratory and two separate successful Diamond Bulk sample plants. In the 1980’s he was responsible for a sampling program across Northern Australia which followed up the Wiluna area leading to the discovery of the diamondiferous Jewel pipe. In his last 2 years at Rio Tinto he was their worldwide diamond exploration expert, visiting and reviewing the company’s entire global exploration portfolio. After leaving Rio Tinto Mr. Doyle focused on Junior exploration companies listed on the TSX-V and AIM. As Chairman of European Diamonds PLC he was involved with bulk sampling and evaluating the Latahoki diamondiferous kimberlite pipe in Finland. Mr. Doyle was also involved in the discovery of the diamondiferous Dharma and La Pointe kimberlites in Canada. In 2006 his work was recognized by his peers when he was awarded the Hugo Dumitt award for Excellence in Diamond Exploration. Mr. Doyle was senior project geologist for the 30 million+ ounce Lihir gold discovery, now a mine, in Papua New Guinea and has since discovered three gold prospects with over 50 gram-metre intercepts which all now form the basis of ASX junior portfolios. He is currently operating a junior focused in Brazil that has global resources of 1.6 million ounces. As a founder and director of several companies listed on AIM and TSX.V he has had extensive experience in running Junior companies and raising funds. Mr. Doyle is a Member of the Australian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy.
Ian Johns, an Australian citizen, has over 25 years of experience in business development, administration and analysis. He has operated as a program manager, project manager, project auditor, contract negotiator and organizational development consultant throughout Australia and SE Asia for the past 20 years, in both the manufacturing and mining industries. Ian has been familiar with the Copeton and Bingara diamond fields since 1993 and has strong local networks and ancestry connections to the project region.He has been a director of numerous private and public manufacturing and natural resource companies including Royalco Resources Ltd (founding Director) and most recently Torian Resources Ltd (previously Cluff Resources NL).
Mr Whyte is a Chartered Accountant (CA) and has extensive company secretarial, financial accounting and corporate experience across several listed and unlisted mineral companies over the past 10 years, being involved in most aspects of the business with a primary focus on corporate and compliance. Mr Whyte previously worked in the investment banking sector in London over a period of 6 years for Credit Suisse and Barclays Capital Plc.
Steve Gemell is a Sydney-based consulting mining engineer with more than 35 years’ experience in the Australian and international environment, having undertaken assignments on six continents and in twenty-six countries. During 1979 and until mid-1980, Steve was the project manager at Copeton for ASX-listed Audimco Limited, responsible for underground (rail) development of the Mount Ross alluvial diamond and tin deposit and for the operation of the test plant. As the registered mine manager, he was responsible for a crew of approximately 30 employees and contractors, and reported directly to the managing director. In mid-1981, Steve returned to Audimco as operations manager, based in Inverell. In addition to regional and some interstate exploration, he managed the underground development and test plant operation at Copeton and underground development at Malacca. Again, he reported directly to the managing director, and retained responsibility for these operations until relocated in late 1983. Audimco’s interests in the Bingara and Copeton diamond fields were subsequently acquired by ASX-listed Cluff Resources Pacific NL, which re-established a test plant at Copeton to support both underground and open pit test work at various locations. Later, from 2003 until 2008, Steve served as non-executive director then as non-executive chairman of Cluff. During his tenure, Cluff undertook several diamond exploration programs in the New England district, including bulk sampling at Monte Christo (Bingara) and shaft sinking on the Davis Block at Copeton.
Peter initially commenced work on diamonds in Eastern Australia with Stockdale Exploration (De Beers – Anglo American JV company) in 1969 then joined CRA Exploration and in 1975. Peter undertook the technical evaluation and recommended entry to the Ashton JV which resulted in discovery of the economically significant Ellendale No 4 and 9 pipes in 1976 and the Argyle pipe in 1979. Peter was heavily involved in training personnel in effective sampling techniques and spent several weeks in the CRAE diamond lab being trained in identification of indicators using a range of physical and petrological tests. While working in the CRA Exploration Research Group in 1980, Peter undertook a major evaluation of all available data on conventional and other potential indicator minerals and generated a subduction model for indicator and diamond generation. Peter managed CRAE’s Eastern Australian diamond exploration in 1980 and looked after technical aspects of programs from Cape York to Tasmania and was involved in evaluation of alluvial and hard rock opportunities in South Africa. In the late 1990’s Peter acquired a North Kimberley project for a small listed company and guided their exploration through to identification of kimberlites in an area of known alluvial diamonds. In 2004 a review of all diamond exploration data in NSW was carried out by Peter at the request of the Department of Minerals and Energy resulting in publication of a diamond data and information CD by the Department. Peter has carried out work on diamonds for a number of small and medium sized companies in Australia and overseas with focus on effective exploration for economic diamond sources using a combination of geological, heavy mineral, geochemical and geophysical methods.
Mr Phillip Kimber is a professional geologist with 34 years industry and consulting experience in alluvial tin and tantalite, gold and sapphires as well as hard rock gold, tin, gypsum and other minerals. This experience has included exploration, mine geology and mine management. Mr Kimber has the appropriate relevant qualifications to be considered an "Expert" under the definitions of the VALMIN Code and a Competent Person for hard rock gold mining and exploration, gypsum and other similar commodities, as well as alluvial mining and exploration including tin, gold, sapphires and other minerals. Phillip specialises in alluvial and hard rock tin, tantalum and gold projects with experience in Australia, Indonesia and Malaysia. Included amongst Phillip's clients are several of the world's major and medium sized tin producers as well as many smaller produces and explorers. Mr Kimber is a member of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (AusIMM).
Mace Blickman, a U.S. citizen, is the President and CEO of Jerry Blickman Inc, a New York-based diamond and jewelry dealer as well as specialist manufacturer of rough diamonds. Mr. Blickman was involved with manufacturing a number of historic rough diamonds, including the famous Petra vivid blue diamond. Mr. Blickman originally learned to plot and polish rough diamonds at a major diamond cutting facility in the mid-1970s. Between 1976 and 1980, Mr. Blickman was a diamond buyer for J. Ortman, Inc., where he developed an expertise in cutting pink, blue, and colorless diamonds. Between 1976 and 1990, Mr. Blickman served on the board of the Diamond Dealers Club of America. During this time, Mr. Blickman worked with the Gemological Institute of America to create a new diamond grading system, which remains the industry standard.