- Media Release
Winners of 2023 BHP Women in Resources National Awards
The resources sector tonight celebrated the finalists and winners of the 2023 BHP Women in Resources National Awards (WIRNA) and the tenth anniversary of these honours.
The awards promote the resources industry as an employer of choice and highlight the value of an inclusive workforce. They leverage on state/territory-based awards, drawing on their winners to be the finalists.
Women from the various professions and across the nation were recognised tonight, including metallurgists, underground mining supervisors, research scientists, engineers, community relations officers, environmental chemists, data scientists, trade electricians, maintenance specialists and many more.
Quote from Andrew Michelmore, MCA Chair:
‘Tonight we celebrate a decade of promoting the sector as an industry of choice for women. The awards reflect not just the achievements of the finalists but the efforts across industry to encourage and promote increased female participation in the sector. Stories of winners will inspire women to join the industry and girls to take up STEM studies.’
Quote from Geraldine Slattery, BHP President Australia:
‘Workforce diversity will be key to creating a modern mining sector that realises our full potential, and it is terrific to see the growing number of women pursuing rewarding careers in mining across the full spectrum of technical and trade professions. We celebrate the inspirational achievements of the winners and nominees of the Women in Resources National Awards, and recognise the valuable contribution of so many women to our industry, regional communities and the national economy.’
The winners of the BHP 2023 Women in Resources National Awards, announced at the National Portrait Gallery this evening, are:
Dyno Nobel Exceptional Woman in Australian Resources Award
Dr Bianca Newcombe, Principal Metallurgist of OptiFroth, for her tenacity to follow her passion and remain connected with industry, from taking up an industry-based PhD, to developing a niche business – along the way significantly contributing to the growth and participation of women in the sector.
Newcrest Exceptional Young Woman in Australian Resources Award
Megan Parry, Ecosystem Reconstruction Advisor with the Closure Studies Team at Energy Resources of Australia, for her rapid career progression, exemplary work and community-based activity to build the reputation of industry, and commitment to forging meaningful connections with young women, Traditional Owners and the scientific community.
The Bloomfield Group Outstanding Australian Tradeswoman, Operator or Technician Award
Lindsay Gerrard, Dual Trade Electrician at INPEX, for her notable career progression and significant contribution in both her workplace and community – demonstrated by her initiative in mentoring female, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander apprentices.
Newmont Excellence in Diversity Programs and Performance Award
Rio Tinto Aluminium Women in Leadership Program for demonstrated success increasing women in frontline leadership positions from 5 per cent to 18 per cent between Q3 2022 and Q2 2023, while challenging long-standing mindsets and recruitment practices, and promoting broader inclusion and diversity.
Maptek Women in Resources Technological Innovation Award
Joana Sousa, Data Science Lead from BHP, for spear-heading digital transformation at BHP through the successful application of machine learning and modelling the benefits of a career in technology to the next generation.
Rio Tinto Inclusion and Diversity Champion in Australian Resources Award
Lucy McClean, Chair of Women in Mining NSW, for her pivotal role in supporting and empowering women in the NSW resources sector and her enthusiasm for connecting young people to the industry.
The finalists of the 2023 BHP Women in Resources National Awards:
Dyno Nobel Exceptional Woman in Australian Resources Award:
Dr Chantel Westley of Rio Tinto in Western Australia
Shannon Turner of Newmont Tanami in Northern Territory
Melanie Cooper of Rio Tinto in Queensland
Kayla Williams of Bell Bay Aluminium in Tasmania
Dr Bianca Newcombe of OptiFroth Solutions in New South Wales
Dr Suneeti Purohit of CSIRO in Victoria
Newcrest Exceptional Young Woman in Australian Resources Award:
Hollie Sampson of Whitehaven Coal in New South Wales
Jessica Priest of GHD in Tasmania
Megan Parry of Energy Resources of Australia in Northern Territory
Daisy Ambach of Glencore Zinc Australia in Queensland
Zixuan Wang of Bell Bay Aluminium in Tasmania
Rachel Peng of Agnico Eagle Fosterville Gold Mine in Victoria
Kelsie Clarke of Woodside Energy Group in Western Australia
The Bloomfield Group Outstanding Australian Tradeswoman, Operator or Technician Award:
Alia Melgin-Hill from Agnico Eagle Fosterville Gold Mine in Victoria
Jacqueline Kelly of Shell QGC in Queensland
Lindsay Gerrard of INPEX in Northern Territory
Julie Smith of Evolution Mining in New South Wales
Melinda Clarke of Woodside Energy in Western Australia
Teri Crawford of Bluestone Mines Tasmania Joint Venture in Tasmania
Newmont Excellence in Diversity Programs and Performance Award:
Rio Tinto’s Indigenous Leadership Program in Queensland
Rio Tinto’s Building Everyday Respect in Western Australia
Bell Bay Aluminium’s Our roadmap to a more equitable, diverse and inclusive workplace in Tasmania
Rio Tinto’s Aluminium Women in Leadership Program in Northern Territory
Maptek Women in Resources Technological Innovation Award:
Eva Lebedeva from Glencore McArthur River Mining in Northern Territory
Samantha Langley from BHP in Western Australia
Joana Sousa of BHP in Queensland
Joanne Henry From WesTrac in New South Wales
Rio Tinto Inclusion and Diversity Champion in Australian Resources Award:
Michael Erickson from AngloGold Ashanti Australia in Western Australia
Dahlia Docherty of Newmont Tanami in Northern Territory
Joanna Stevens of Premier Strategy in Victoria
John Rann of Rio Tinto – Gove Operations in Northern Territory
Lucy McClean of Women in Mining in NSW
Larissa Walker of Shell QGC in Queensland