AME Announces 2021 Award Recipients

Leaders in mineral exploration and development will be recognized at AME’s Awards Gala – A Celebration of Excellence to be held at AME Roundup 2022 at the Vancouver Convention Centre West.

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Dec. 07, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Association for Mineral Exploration (“AME”) is pleased to announce its 2021 Celebration of Excellence Award recipients. The recipients are leaders who have made significant contributions to the mineral exploration and development industry. They will be celebrated at the prestigious AME Awards Gala to be held in person at the Vancouver Convention Centre West on Wednesday, February 2, 2022.

Tickets are available through AME Roundup 2022 registration at

This year’s award recipients are:

  • Theodore (Ted) W. Muraro is the recipient of the AME 2021 H.H. “Spud” Huestis Award for significant contributions to enhancing the mineral resources of BC or Yukon. Ted has devoted more than 60 years to the mineral exploration industry. His most notable contribution was the 1965 discovery of a gold occurrence that eventually became the Snip gold mine in northwest BC.
  • John McConnell and the Victoria Gold team are the recipients of the AME 2021 E.A. Scholz Award for excellence in mine development in BC or Yukon, in recognition of their achievement over the past decade in developing and successfully bringing the Eagle Gold Mine into production. The Eagle Gold Mine is a 37,000 tonne-per-day operation located within the traditional territory of the Na-Cho Nyak Dun First Nation in central Yukon.
  • David Harquail is the recipient of the AME 2021 Murray Pezim Award for significant contributions to the mineral exploration and mining community by a financier. Under David’s stewardship, Franco-Nevada has provided billions of dollars in capital to the mineral industry to advance projects throughout Canada and internationally.
  • R. Bob Singh and Chris Taylor are the recipients of the AME 2021 Colin Spence Award for a significant mineral discovery outside BC or Yukon through the original application of prospecting techniques or other geoscience technology. They are being honoured for their pivotal role in discovering the multi-kilometre LP Fault gold zone at the Dixie property in the Red Lake district, northwestern Ontario, for Great Bear Resources Ltd.
  • Gregory Dipple is the inaugural recipient of the 2021 AME Innovation Award for a significant innovation or technical advancement that benefits mineral exploration in BC or worldwide. Greg is recognized for his research on mineral carbon sequestration. His work in this field is ground-breaking and has established a sound scientific basis to support the low-emission extraction of minerals and metals globally for decades to come.
  • Silvana Costa is the recipient of the AME 2021 Robert R. Hedley Award for excellence in social and environmental responsibility, sponsored by ERM. Silvana’s commitment to, and leadership in, environmental, social and governance (ESG) practices in the global mineral exploration and mining industry have led to the evolution of responsible practices, improved risk management and mutually beneficial outcomes. Her work has resulted in shared value creation between industry and rural, remote and Indigenous communities in BC and abroad.
  • Ron Bernbaum is the recipient of the AME 2021 Special Tribute Award for service to the minerals industry in BC. As the founder of PearTree Canada, Ron is being acknowledged for his role in creating the Charitable Flow-Through financing mechanism. Introduced in 1972, flow-through shares are a tax-based financing incentive that gives Canada a distinct advantage over global competitors in attracting risk capital for mineral exploration and development.
  • The Tahltan Emergency Management Committee is the recipient of the AME 2021 David Barr Award for its leadership and innovation in mineral exploration health and safety. The Committee is recognized for creating an inclusive and agile forum to facilitate communication between Indigenous communities and industry in northwest BC. The Committee demonstrated exemplary leadership during both the COVID-19 pandemic and the wildfire season.
  • Michael Gray is the 2021 recipient of the Frank Woodside Gold Pan Award for distinguished service to AME. During the 25 years that Mike has supported AME, he has been a tireless supporter for the mineral exploration industry, instrumental in communicating industry needs and opportunities to government leaders and the finance community to help BC maintain its distinction as a centre of excellence in mineral exploration and mining.
  • MineralsEd is the recipient of AME’s Outreach Education Fund supporting well-established Education Programs related to mineral exploration and development.

For more information about the award recipients, download the AME 2021 Award Citations.

Jill Tsolinas, Chair of the AME Board of Directors, commented, “The AME Celebration of Excellence Awards recognize the achievements of individuals who contribute to successfully finding, funding and building safe and responsible mineral exploration and development projects. I look forward to celebrating the achievements of these leaders in their fields at the Awards Gala at AME Roundup 2022.”

A limited number of sponsorship opportunities remain for the AME Awards Gala event on February 2, 2022. If you would like your company to be recognized at the event, please email

AME Contact:

Jordan Townley
Manager, Marketing and Communications

About AME

AME is the lead association for the mineral exploration and development industry based in British Columbia. Established in 1912, AME represents, advocates and promotes the interests of members who are engaged in mineral exploration and development in BC and globally. AME encourages a safe, economically strong and environmentally responsible industry by providing clear initiatives, policies, events and tools to support its membership in delivering responsible projects that advance reconciliation and provide benefit to all British Columbians.