The winners of the 2017 Rio Tinto Women in Resources National Awards were announced last night at a dinner in Launceston, Tasmania, which attracted high achievers from the resources sector across the country. WA women, Vanessa Torres, BHP Iron Ore and Rachel Leong, Woodside were winners of their categories, and Sharron Freitas, Alcoa was recognised with a high commendation from the national judges.

St Barbara won the Excellence in Company Diversity Programs and Performance award.

The Women in Resources National Awards is a partnership between the Minerals Council of Australia and its Northern Territory and Victorian branches, the Chamber of Minerals and Energy of Western Australia, the Queensland Resources Council, the New South Wales Minerals Council and the Tasmanian Minerals and Energy Council, supported by various state Women in Mining Network branches.
CME Position
The resources sector recognises the benefits that increased diversity can bring to business and the sector is increasingly improving practices that support fairer and more flexible policies focused on recruitment, retention and promotion of women. Women also need good role models and these awards reflect the commitment and leadership shown by women in the sector.

CME congratulates all of the finalists and award winners.

Winners of the 2017 Rio Tinto Australian Women in Resources National Awards are:

Exceptional Woman in Australian Resources

Winner: Vanessa Torres, Vice President, Operational Infrastructure, BHP Iron Ore (WA)
Highly Commended: Kirsten Molloy, Chief Executive Officer of the Hunter Valley Coal Chain Coordinator (NSW); Karen Alexander, Manager Strategic Alliances, Hastings Deering (NSW)

Exceptional Young Woman in Australian Resources

Winner: Rachel Leong, Lead Surveillance Engineer, Woodside Energy Ltd (WA)

Highly Commended: Nikhat Nagin, Principal Engineering, BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance (BMA) (QLD)

Outstanding Tradeswoman/Operator/Technician in Australian Resources

Winner: Carolyn Dobson, Diesel Fitter, BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance (BMA) (QLD)

Highly Commended: Sharron Freitas, Production Group Leader, Alcoa of Australia (WA)

Gender Diversity Champion in Australia Resources

Winner: Fiona Robertson, Non-Executive Director, Heron Resources (NSW)

Highly Commended: Gabriela Love, Principal Mine Projects Engineer, Newcrest Mining Ltd (Vic)

Excellence in Company Diversity Programs and Performance

Winner: St Barbara Limited (VIC)

Highly Commended: BHP Billiton – Integrated Remote Operating Centre (QLD)
Special Judges Awards

Andrew Bigg, Operations Manager Mining and Mobile Maintenance, South32 GMECO (NT)
Industry Achievement Award

Michelle Keegan, Vice President Strategy, Incitec Pivot Limited (VIC)

Further information about the winners can be found on the Women in Resources National Awards website.
Further Information
Susan Cull

©2017 Chamber of Minerals & Energy of Western Australia Inc.
Level 10, 2 Mill Street, Perth WA, 6000


Author: WASMA

The history of the Western Australian School of Mines Alumni (WASMA) reflects the ups and downs of the Western Australian School of Mines (WASM) and the role it has played in supporting graduates in a range of activities and events. It also describes the important role that graduates have played in ensuring WASM remains in Kalgoorlie. Learn more.