Mr. McConnell was the Chief Executive Officer of Namibia Rare Earths from 2010 – 2016 when he stepped down and assumed the role of Chair of the Board. He was President and Chief Executive Officer of Etruscan Resources Inc. from 1990 to 2010 when it was acquired by Endeavour Mining Corporation (TSX). Mr. McConnell was a founder and has been a director of NovaGold Resources Inc. (TSX; NYSE-MKT) since 1984, and was President of NovaGold from December 1984 to January 1998. He is also a member of the Board of Directors and Chair of Trilogy Metals Inc. (TSX:NYSE-MKT: TMQ). Mr. McConnell was called to the Bar of Nova Scotia in 1971 and was an associate and partner with the law firm, Patterson Palmer, in Halifax, Nova Scotia from 1971 to 1987. He received his Queen’s Counsel designation in 1986. In 2003, Mr. McConnell received the Paul Harris Award from Rotary International in recognition of Etruscan’s humanitarian contributions to health and education initiatives in Africa.
Since 2009, Mr. Hickey has been a private developer and financier of projects, focusing on early stage greenfield mining prospects throughout Sub Saharan Africa. From 2006 to 2009, Mr. Hickey was Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Minas de Revuboe Limitada, a private company that he co-founded and then managed through the development of a greenfield coal project in Mozambique and on to a feasibility study and final sale. From 2001 to 2006, he was managing director of NAB Mining Group Africa (Pty) Ltd, a mining, exploration and development company that he founded, which partnered with Nippon Steel of Japan and developed greenfield coal deposits in South Africa. From 1996 to 2001, he was a manager of Baan, which was the vendor of enterprise resource planning software. From 1986 to 1994, he was the founder and managing director of Swiss Chrome International AG, which developed a greenfields chrome project that is now owned by Mitsubishi Corporation and is presently the fourth-largest ferrochrome producer globally. From 1977 to 1985, Mr. Hickey held a number of positions with various companies providing geophysical technical services in connection with a number of mining projects worldwide.
Mr. van Wyk is a Metallurgical Engineer by profession, with over 25 years of extensive experience in the mining industry, particularly in developing and operating mines in Namibia. In addition to his professional qualifications as a Metallurgical Engineer from Tshwane University of Technology (Pretoria), Mr. van Wyk holds a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of South Africa and Masters of Business Administration from University of Bloemfontein with a focus on project management. Mr. van Wyk is Managing Director of Gecko Namibia (Pty) Ltd., which he joined in 2008. Prior to joining Gecko Namibia he worked for Rössing Uranium as Engineering Manager and later with Paladin Energy at the Langer Heinrich uranium mine where he held the positions of Operations Manager and Business Development Manager. As Managing Director for Gecko Namibia, Mr. van Wyk has developed a strong network of contacts throughout the mining sector and with government agencies in Namibia. In 2017, Mr. van Wyk joined the Board of Directors of Celsius Resources Limited (ASX:CLA).
Mr. Kapp is a Qualified Chartered Accountant with over 20 years of executive financial management experience. He is currently the Chief Financial Officer of Gecko Africa Holding (Pty) Ltd. a position he has held since 2011. Prior to joining the Gecko group of companies, Mr. Kapp held various positions including tax officer/inspector at the South African Department of Finance from 1987 to 1992, as well as the position of audit and tax partner at the Port Elizabeth office of the international auditing firm Mazars (previously Moores Rowland) from 1996 to 2008. Mr. Kapp has been a member of the Board of Directors of Gecko Africa Holdings (Pty) Ltd and Genet South Africa (Pty) Ltd. (wholly owned subsidiary of Gecko Africa Holdings (Pty) Ltd.) since 2011. Genet South Africa (Pty) Ltd. and its subsidiaries are actively involved in diversified mining services in South Africa and a number of other Southern African countries, providing various mining services ranging from exploration, drilling, opencast mining, beneficiation, plant design and material handling and more services, for coal, chrome, manganese and copper mines. Mr. Kapp is the co-founder and managing director on the Board of The Swartkops Terminal (Pty) Ltd., a company involved in the export of 1.7m tons of manganese from South Africa per annum. Mr. Kapp has been a non-executive member of the Board of Directors of Bayethe Game Reserve (Pty) Ltd since 2010, a subsidiary of the Shamwari Game Reserve Group in South Africa, the latter being wholly owned by the Emirates Group Dubai (previously Dubai World). From 2011 to 2017, Mr. Kapp was a director of Umcebo Mining (Pty) Ltd., a subsidiary of Glencore Operations South Africa (Pty) Ltd and Pembani Group. Mr. Kapp holds a B.Com (Honors) degree in accounting from the University of Port Elizabeth (1992) and is a registered member of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA) since 1996. Mr. Kapp has been a registered member of the Independent Regulatory Board of Auditors in South Africa (IRBA) since 1996 and a non-attest member since August 2008.
Mr. Price is the former Chairman and Global Chief Investment Officer of Dresdner RCM Global Investors and CIO for equities at Allianz Dresdner RCM. Following his retirement in 2003, Mr. Price has been a private investor and CEO of the William L. Price Charitable Foundation. He has served as a corporate director of several publicly traded companies. A graduate of Dartmouth College and a Graduate Fellow (Political Science) at Brooklyn College, Mr. Price worked for the US Department of State before going to Wall Street as a securities analyst. He joined Rosenberg Capital Management in 1976 and became Chairman and CEO in 1996. For fifteen of those years he was a guest lecturer at the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University.
Ms. Stairs has over 30 years’ experience working with companies involved in the resource sector. Prior to joining Namibia Rare Earths in September 2011, Ms. Stairs was General Counsel to Endeavour Mining Corporation, a position she assumed in September 2010 after Endeavour acquired Etruscan Resources Inc. where Ms. Stairs had held the positions of Vice President and General Counsel since 2004. Prior to 2004, Ms. Stairs was a partner with the law firm of McInnes Cooper (formerly Patterson Palmer) located in Halifax, Nova Scotia and she continues to act as counsel to the firm. Ms. Stairs practiced law in private practice for almost 20 years specializing in corporate finance, securities and resource-related issues for private and public companies. Ms. Stairs is a director of Trilogy Metals Inc. (TSX:NYSE-MKT: TMQ), Gabriel Resources Ltd. (TSXV:GBU) and Marathon Gold Corporation (TSX:MOZ). Ms. Stairs graduated from Dalhousie Law School and holds a Master of Business Administration degree from Queen’s University.