Newmont has announced that Bernard Wessels has been appointed General Manager of the Peñasquito mine, replacing Jim Cooper. Jim Cooper’s employment with Newmont has been terminated with immediate effect for violations of Newmont’s Code of Conduct while working for the Company in Australia.
Bernard Wessels brings a long and successful track record of operational delivery to Peñasquito having managed Newmont’s Ahafo mine in Ghana since 2017. During his time at Ahafo, Bernard delivered the Ahafo Mill Expansion project on budget and is advancing the improved mining method at Subika Underground which will increase production, capture higher efficiencies and lower costs. Bernard delivered improved safety performance, consistently strong operational performance and significantly improved productivities across the site. Prior to joining Newmont, Bernard managed complex gold and platinum mines across South Africa, balancing difficult technical and community challenges at each operation.
“Despite the challenging circumstances caused by Covid-19, the team on the ground in Mexico has continued to deliver solid operational performance at Peñasquito and has been recognized for its industry leading approach in managing through the pandemic,” said Tom Palmer, President and Chief Executive Officer. “Bernard is a capable leader who brings a proven track record of delivery at large, complex operations and will continue a culture of continuous improvement to drive efficiencies and improve performance at this world-class operation.”
Since acquiring Peñasquito, Newmont has delivered steady operational improvements and reset the vital relationship with local communities. As previously announced, the Cedros General Assembly recently ratified the definitive agreement reached in April to resolve all outstanding disputes between Peñasquito and the San Juan de Cedros community. The agreement expressly states that any future disputes will be resolved through dialogue and free of blockades.
Peñasquito is a world-class asset with over 8 million ounces of gold Reserves, approximately 26 million ounces in gold equivalent ounce Reserves, and significant exploration potential in this prospective district which may allow the Company to extend value delivery for decades to come.
Newmont is the world’s leading gold company and a producer of copper, silver, zinc and lead. The Company’s world-class portfolio of assets, prospects and talent is anchored in favorable mining jurisdictions in North America, South America, Australia and Africa. Newmont is the only gold producer listed in the S&P 500 Index and is widely recognized for its principled environmental, social and governance practices. The Company is an industry leader in value creation, supported by robust safety standards, superior execution and technical expertise. Newmont was founded in 1921 and has been publicly traded since 1925.