Fantastic Finalists

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The finalists for the 2022 NSW Women in Mining Awards have been announced and BHP’s Mt Arthur Coal has once again proven to be home to some of our industry’s most exceptional women.

The NSW Women in Mining Awards help recognise the achievements of the outstanding women in our sector and the broader efforts towards a more diverse workforce.

BHP’s Mt Arthur Coal are leaders when it comes to promoting diversity and inclusion in our industry, so it’s no surprise that two of this year’s finalists come from their ranks.

Ebony Ford is a finalist for the Outstanding Trade, Operator or Technician category. Ebony grew up in Singleton and showed a talent for the tools from a young age, always at the side of her Plant Mechanic dad. Ebony is now a qualified High Voltage Electrician at BHP’s Mt Arthur Coal Mine and is one of only two High Voltage female Electricians on site.

Ebony plays an active role in mentoring and supporting BHP’s apprentices, mentoring around eight apprentices annually, assisting with TAFE work, supporting hands-on learning and helping to identify the kind of learners they are.

An avid sportsperson, Ebony has also been a significant contributor to her community, starting the first-ever Rugby 7s Women’s side for Singleton in 2022. Ebony championed a Friday night competition within Newcastle, Maitland, and the Hunter that starts late so that women can play after their shift finishes on site.

On being nominated Ebony said, “I was fortunate enough to be nominated by a work colleague for the women in mining award. It was great to hear that I am having a positive impact out on site and recognised for my work. I feel very grateful for being a finalist. This will hopefully lead to opening up many more opportunities for me in the future. My main aim is to encourage other young women to give every opportunity they have a chance, and to enter the mining industry.”

Samar Obeid is a finalist for the Exceptional Young Woman category. When Samar left war-torn Lebanon with her parents as an 11 year old, she spoke no English. Twelve years later, Samar has excelled professionally and personally through her community volunteer work, such as supporting immigrants and the homeless and assisting disabled children.

Samar’s exceptional performance and work ethic have resulted in many opportunities in her short career across companies in both WA and NSW. A mining engineer, Samar has undertaken roles of Mining Executive to the General Manager Technical Service, Rio Tinto Iron Ore, a secondment to the Rio finance and business analysis team, FIFO Project Engineer and her current role as a Production Engineer at BHP Mt Arthur Coal.

Samar has dedicated a significant part of her time to encouraging other young women to follow a STEM career by being a role model and launching a network group connecting high school and university students.

ATCF 16 WIM Samar
BHP Mt Arthur Coal’s Samar Obeid

On being nominated Samar said, “I am honoured to be selected as a finalist for the NSW Exceptional Young Woman of the Year Award. I owe it all to my incredible parents for their love and support. My humble beginnings have shaped me into the person I am today and I am very grateful for the opportunities I have. I am also so thankful for the support my leaders, mentors and colleagues have given me over the years. My goal is to continue to empower and encourage young females to believe in themselves. Congratulations to all those nominated. I feel very fortunate to be amongst such inspiring women!”

Congratulations to all the finalists for this years awards, and to all the women who continue to make an increasingly important contribution to a successful NSW mining industry.  

Outstanding Trade, Operator or Technician
Casey Martin – Underground Bogger Operator & tele-remote operation, Alkane Resources – Tomingley Gold Operations
Jo Price – Metallurgist, Processing, Evolution Mining
Ebony Ford – Technician Maintenance, BHP Mt Arthur Coal
Georgia Wilson – Development Shotfirer, CSA Mine Glencore

Technological Innovation Award
Michelle Eckersley – Environment and Community Officer, Mount Pleasant Operation, Thiess
Emily Jaques – Senior Plant Metallurgist, Newcrest Mining – Cadia Valley Operations

Gender Diversity Champion
Taryn Chua – Group Manager Business Development, Evolution Mining
Michelle Wetherell – Superintendent, Human Resources, Training and Organisational Development, CMOC-Northparkes Mines

Exceptional Young Woman
Tamara Woods – Executive Managing Consultant, Hetherington
Samar Obeid – Production Engineer, BHP Mt Arthur Coal

Exceptional Woman
Rebecca Jackson – Exploration Manager, Yancoal Australia
Lyndsay Potts – Manager, Health, Safety and Environment, Newcrest Mining, Cadia Valley Operations
Celebrate with the finalists and winners on Thursday 23 June at Doltone House Hyde Park. Tickets are on sale now at

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