Courtesy of Anne Marie Toutant

After two years tied to my hastily created, ergonomically incorrect, home workstation, I was ready to go out into the world, reconnect in person with friends and colleagues, meet new people and expand my thinking. This year’s CIM National Convention & Expo in Vancouver was the perfect opportunity.

If you were able to join us at CIMBC22, lucky you! The thought-provoking keynote certainly challenged the thinking of those in attendance, and the opening panel with industry executives was inspiring. I learned that both sides of innovation (efficiency and creativity) are essential in addressing the complex challenges and opportunities we are collectively facing as an industry and as a society – like climate change, extracting/recycling the resources needed for a net-zero world, addressing skills shortages and collaborating with local communities to create sustainable prosperity.

This concept of thriving in a world that’s increasingly unpredictable is equally valid for a national institute like CIM. For me, CIM is as much about community and the celebration of excellence as it is about the exchange of knowledge, promotion of best practices and engaging society. These five tenets have been in place for a very long time and continue to be relevant today – what is changing is how the tenets are embraced by our branches, societies and committees as we move forward. Let me give you an example: 40 years ago, CIM members eagerly looked forward to the arrival of the latest CIM publication by “snail mail," enabling them to catch up on the latest technical innovations in peer-reviewed papers. Today this exchange of technical knowledge remains critical, but can be delivered via the internet, on demand. The tenet of exchange of knowledge is consistent, the mechanism by which this knowledge is exchanged is changing. CIM needs to ensure that our platforms, practices, and governance processes continue to evolve to facilitate the needs of industry, society, our partners and members.

The transition to a low-carbon future and global population growth means that metals and minerals are more important than ever and it’s essential that all who can help realize these opportunities to ensure the world has the resources it needs feel welcome, included and represented in CIM. Increasingly, traditional discipline boundaries are blurring, as are upstream and downstream roles in supply chains (I heard the term supply webs recently), and this blurring of traditional mining roles can be seen as an opportunity to engage a much larger pool of talent. Looking beyond our traditional boundaries we’re collaborating and developing solutions to improve safety, productivity and environmental performance.

As CIM heads towards its 125th anniversary in 2023, Angela Hamlyn, and members of the CIM Council will (hopefully – fingers crossed) be out and about at branch and society events and collaborating in person with supplier and industry partners. The success of the institute and our industry requires everyone working together.

Welcome home, it’s good to see you in person again, and I look forward to serving as your president for the next year.