Queenslanders shine in national women in resources awards

  • Posted 16 September, 2020
  • Media Releases

16 September 2020

Two Queensland women have taken out top honours in the Women in Resources National Awards presented by the Minerals Council of Australia today.

Kathryn Young, Geotechnical Engineer at BHP’s Peak Downs Mine in Moranbah took the Newcrest Exceptional Young Woman in Australian Resources Award for her impressive technical leadership, mentoring and strong advocacy on gender diversity.

“Attracting women to pursue careers in the resources sector should begin at school and university,” said Kathryn.

“To do this I’m actively involved in Space Design Competitions Australia – to mentor and encourage female school students to pursue careers in science technology engineering and maths (STEM) fields,” she said.

Kathryn also participates in a wide range of industry events at local universities as a BHP representative and supervises interns (of which 50 percent have been female) during their summer vacation period.

“I truly believe that I’m very lucky to work in the industry that I do, and no day is the same and there are always things that can be continually improved and new challenges that we can overcome. So, it’s a really exciting time to work in the industry and I can’t wait to see what the future in mining holds for me.”

Meanwhile, Larnie Mackay, Digital Transformation: Underground Project Lead for Anglo American in Moranbah took the inaugural Maptek Women in Resources Technological Innovation Award.

The judges selected Larnie for her innovation and perseverance in leading the development of the first, and so far, only, electronic tablet device certified for unrestricted use in underground coal mining in Australia.

“Our underground tablets have changed the way we work underground and opened the door for further improvements in digitisation and data analytics to help improve safety and productivity in our operations,” said Larnie.

“It has been a culture and technology game changer at our underground mines, and the way it has been embraced by our teams – especially those underground – has been phenomenal.

“I’m proud to have been recognised for a project that has been a passion of mine for a long time, and that I know will have an impact on our industry into the future.”

“The winners of the prestigious BHP 2020 Women in Resources National Awards announced today highlight the diversity, calibre and skills of people working in Australia’s world-leading resources industry,” said MCA Chief Executive Officer Tania Constable.

“These awards celebrate initiatives that create a more diverse, safer, fairer and stronger sector. And as ambassadors and role models, the award winners will inspire more women to enter the resources workforce,” she said.

“Queensland had eight finalists in these awards and I want to congratulate every one of them for their outstanding achievements,” said Queensland Resources Council Chief Executive Ian Macfarlane.

“These awards play a pivotal role in our sector’s efforts to bring better gender balance to our workforce, and it’s a great outcome that the MCA pushed ahead with the awards, despite COVID-19 restrictions.

“More than double the number of women are now working in our resources sector in Queensland compared with 2006 when we began our Women in Resources Action Plan.

“It’s a testament to the hard work of QRC members, and resources companies nationally, who have incorporated gender diversity into their mainstream business plans. They recognise that with diversity comes improved safety, innovation and productivity.

“The competition for skilled people is also driving the imperative to attract and retain more women in our expanding sector. This means we can continue to supply the world with the minerals and energy vital to our modern way of life, and see us through in tough times, such as the current pandemic,” he said.