First Americas is fortunate to have a seasoned management and technical group with strong backgrounds in all aspects of acquisition, exploration, development, and financing of resource based projects. The team includes:
Directors and Officers:
Drew M. Bonnell, MBA
President, Chief Executive Officer and Director
Mr. Bonnell has served as the Company's President, Chief Executive Officer and Director since May 2007. With over 25 years business experience, Mr. Bonnell has served as a Director, CEO and CFO of various public and private resource and industrial companies including Eden Energy Corp., Coronado Corp., Nical Holdings Ltd., and Snomotion Whistler Inc. His involvement in these companies contributed to attracting necessary capital investments, multiple joint ventures and project acquisitions, and the 20-year success of a private, resort based business operation. Mr. Bonnell graduated from the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario with a Masters Degree in Business Administration in 1998 and brings an extensive knowledge of finance, operations, strategy and public company management to First Americas. Mr. Bonnell is a past champion windsurfer, expert skier, cyclist, outdoorsman and award winning photographer.
David R. McElhanney, MBA
Chief Financial Officer, VP Operations and Director.
Mr. McElhanney has served as a Director since April 27, 2010. He is the principal of MBE Ventures Inc., an independent consulting practice in operation since May 2007. MBE provides customized services for corporate and project-level strategy development and implementation. Since May 2011, he has been a director of Gold Ridge Exploration Corp., a private mineral exploration company. From June 2005 to June 2011, Mr. McElhanney served as a director for Newton Gold Corp. (formerly New High Ridge Resources Inc.), a company listed on the TSX Venture Exchange, which is in the business of evaluating, acquiring and developing natural resource properties. Prior to founding MBE, Mr. McElhanney held senior management and technical roles in Western Canada with engineering consultant McElhanney Consulting Services Ltd. He also worked with a BC-based management consulting company for three years implementing performance management practices in energy business applications. Mr. McElhanney holds degrees in Civil Engineering from McMaster University (1985) and an MBA from the Richard Ivey Business School at the University of Western Ontario (1998). He received his ICD.D accreditation from the Institute of Corporate Directors in 2010 and has expertise in corporate governance, operations and management, finance and strategic planning.
Roman Friedrich III
Independent Director, Chair of the Audit Committee
Mr. Friedrich has served as Director and Chair of the Audit Committee since September 4, 2012. He has over 30 years experience serving in investment banking, advisory, and consultancy roles to the mining and metals industries. Mr. Friedrich is the founder and President of Roman Friedrich & Company, a mining and metals boutique investment bank, established in 1997. Mr. Friedrich past served with Chase Manhattan Bank, as president of Chase Manhattan Bank Canada Ltd., Vice President Latin America, and Managing director responsible for North American investment banking. Mr. Friedrich currently serves as Director of Zincore Metals Inc. trading on the TSX, various Boards of NYSE listed Closed End and Exchange Traded Funds managed by Guggenheim Funds Investment Advisors, and the Board of Trustees of the Guggenheim Investments family of NYSE listed Claymore Exchange Traded Fund Trust and Claymore Exchange Traded Trust 2.
David Rankin, MBA
Mr. Rankin, has served as a Director since April 27, 2010. Mr. Rankin has 20 years experience in technology, strategic planning, project management and business development. He has spent the past 13 years building his business and management consulting practice - RFPA Management Ltd. with interludes of working within companies to direct and focus their business and growth strategies. Since September 2004, Mr. Rankin has been a director of Cooper Minerals Inc., a mineral exploration company listed on the TSX Venture Exchange. Since February 2005, Mr. Rankin has been a director of E-Energy Ventures Inc., a junior uranium exploration company listed on the TSX Venture Exchange. Mr. Rankin has relevant business experience in the insurance, real estate, manufacturing, renewable energy, technology, hotel and mining sectors with a focus on financial management and strategic planning. Mr. Rankin is an MBA graduate from the Richard Ivey School of Business of the University of Western Ontario in 1998. Mr. Rankin received his ICD.D accreditation from the Institute of Corporate Directors in 2012.
William L. Macdonald
Mr. Macdonald has served as a Director since April 13, 2008. He is a founder and principal of Macdonald Tuskey, Corporate and Securities Lawyers, a boutique securities and corporate finance firm located in Vancouver, British Columbia, which was established in April 2008. From February 1998 to April 2008, Mr. Macdonald was a partner with Clark Wilson LLP and a member of the firm's Corporate Finance / Securities Practice Group. Mr. Macdonald has been the President and a director of Blackbird Energy Inc., an oil and gas company listed on the TSX Venture Exchange, since May 2008. Mr. Macdonald has been a member of the Law Society of BritishColumbia since February 1999 and a member of the New York State Bar since February 2002. Mr. Macdonald obtained his Bachelor of Law degree from the University of Western Ontario in 1997 and his Bachelor of Arts degree from Simon Fraser University in 1993.
Robert Thompson Ph D, P Eng
Dr. Robert Thompson has served as a Director and Advising Geologist since March 22, 2012. Dr. Robert Thompson graduated from Queens University with a PhD in geology in 1972. He worked as project geologist for the British Columbia Department of Mines until 1974 when he joined the Geological Survey of Canada as a Research Scientist. Dr. Thompson led major geological surveys in British Columbia and the Yukon; was seconded as advisor to the Deputy Minister of Energy Mines and Petroleum Resources; and served as technical advisor to the Bolivian Government under the auspices of the Petro Canada International Aid Corporation. Most recently, Dr. Thompson has acted as consultant to several junior mineral exploration companies and is currently serving as Chief Geologist for Northern Vertex Capital Inc. Dr. Thompson is certified for completing the SME Board Effectiveness Program from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto.
As research scientist, Dr. Thompson remained a hands-on leader, spearheading field-based surveys focusing on a better understanding of Canada's mineral and petroleum resource endowment. His contributions, including more than 100 peer-reviewed maps and publications, innovative ideas and project leadership, were recognized by the Canadian Society of Petroleum Geologists who awarded him the RJW Douglas Medal for contributions to the structural and stratigraphic understanding of Canada's western sedimentary basin.
Technical and Geological Experts:
Doug Blanchflower P.Geo
Author, Consulting Geologist, and Qualified Person of NI 43-101 Technical Report
Mr. Doug Blanchflower, of Minorex Consulting Ltd., graduated with a Bachelor of Science, Honours Geology degree, Economic Geology from the University of British Columbia in 1971. He is a registered Professional Geoscientist with the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of British Columbia and the Association of Professional Geoscientists of Ontario.
Robert Thompson Ph D, P Eng