The National Mining Hall of Fame and Museum’s Board of Directors is pleased to announce the 2016 Prazen Living Legend of Mining Award will be presented to the Women’s Mining Coalition at the 29th Annual National Mining Hall of Fame induction banquet on September 24, 2016 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, NV.
Every year, the National Mining Hall of Fame & Museum (NMHF&M) selects an individual or entity that has demonstrated ongoing, innovative work educating the public, policy makers, educators, or related institutions about the importance of the mineral and mining industry to our everyday lives. The awardee is selected from a pool of nominations reviewed by the National Mining Hall of Fame’s Prazen committee.
After an unprecedented election of women to Congress in 1992, geologist Kathy Benedetto saw an opportunity to go to Washington, D.C. and educate these newly elected women lawmakers about minerals exploration and mining. Kathy recruited the help of two other female geologists, Ruth Carraher and Debra Struhsacker, and together they organized what would become an annual Fly-In to meet with our nation’s policy makers. Women’s Mining Coalition (WMC) evolved from that first Fly-In in 1993 and its membership continues to actively educate and advocate for the mineral and mining industry.
The Fly-ins garner the attention of our legislators and federal agencies and send the message, “A strong mining industry is vitally important to our nation, our communities, our families, and our livelihoods.” WMC members emphasize that many jobs all across the country depend on mining and practically everything we use in our daily lives is the direct result of mined products.
WMC has recruited its membership such that it has representatives from coast to coast and from all aspects of the mining industry including geologists, engineers, metallurgists, miners, environmental experts, attorneys, mining vendors and suppliers, energy producers, and other related fields. WMC members advocating for the varied mineral and mining sectors are able to provide policy makers with first-hand information about the technological advancements and environmental stewardship of today’s mining industry. Particularly effective among policy makers is the fact that WMC members are not typical lobbyists; they are daughters, wives and mothers as well as highly qualified mining industry professionals.
Frank McAllister, NMHF&M Board of Directors Chairman commented, “The Women’s Mining Coalition embodies the spirit of the Prazen Living Legend of Mining Award through 24 years of ongoing mining advocacy and education activities. Their membership has had a tremendous influence and impact on promoting all aspects of the mining industry and spreading the message “Everything begins with mining. Everything!” We are proud to recognize their efforts and bestow WMC with this prestigious award.”