Christine Kaszycki, assistant deputy minister of the Ministry of Northern Development, Mines and Forestry (MNDMF), has been officially named the province’s new Ring of Fire Coordinator.
The red-hot Ring of Fire, located in the James Bay lowlands roughly 535 kilometres northeast of Thunder Bay, is the location of a chromite deposit whose development is expected to cost $1.5 billion and create opportunities for Northern Ontario communities, First Nations, and business.
In the McGuinty government’s annual budget announcement in March, Finance Minister Dwight Duncan highlighted the creation of the role of the coordinator, which would “lead the collective effort in advancing the economic promise in the area of the Ring of Fire.”
At the Ontario Mining Association's annual meeting in North Bay in June, Northern Development, Mines and Forestry Minister Michael Gravelle said the coordinator will "work with all parties to ensure this project moves ahead in a timely and appropriate way, ensuring a collective effort is made advancing economic development in the McFaulds Lake area."
Kaszycki has also served as assistant deputy minister in Manitoba’s Ministry of Industry, Economic Development and Mines, as well as chair of the National Orphaned / Abandoned Mines Initiative. For her work in the latter role, she was awarded with the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada’s Environmental Award in 2004.
Having helped spearhead some of the recent changes to Ontario’s Mining Act, she also serves on the board of directors of Sudbury’s Centre for Excellence in Mining Innovation.
With a bachelor’s degree in physical geology from Carleton University and a master’s degree and doctorate in geology from the University of Illinois, Kaszycki first worked with the Geological Survey of Canada, as well as the Ontario Geological Survey in Sudbury.