Dear Dr. Anderson,
I read your brief statement [about leaving Ghana] with sadness.
During my dealings with you, you demonstrated all the qualities that your company can be proud of.
I felt that you are a person I can trust.
You are a man of great integrity and professionalism.
I will personally feel your absence as we try to make the Akyem project a success to the satisfaction of all parties.
Thank you for everything.
Nana Frimpong Manso IV
[Former Paramount Chief, Akyem]
Former Executive Director, Fund for Peace, currently Senior Specialist at Monkey Forest Consulting
I’ve learned so much from Chris over the years – both directly and indirectly. Directly, he took the time to teach me about the mining industry – both from a company perspective as well as from the perspective of the communities in which they operate. Indirectly, I possibly learned even more as I saw (and continue to see) him walk the talk: reaching out constantly to ensure open dialogue, strengthen relationships, support others’ efforts, and most of all demonstrate that people in industry don’t just support communities, they are part of them.
September 8, 2010
Former Exploration Manager, Akyem, Ghana for Newmont Mining; currently Exploration Manager at Sierra Exploration & Mining Ltd
Chris has an impressive career experience profile which firmly placed him as a leader in the field of Corporate and External Affairs. The commitment and passion towards the work Chris is doing reflects in recognition and appreciation that he was awarded with.
His belief is that: “good public relations and community relations is essential to long and profitable operating” was clearly demonstrated in the work and leadership he provided during the Akyem pre-feasibility, feasibility and pre-production stage of the Akyem project. Chris’s guidance, leadership and passion has put the Akyem project and external stakeholders firmly on the “map of social understanding, social responsibility and good communications”
It was an honour to meet Chris and had the opportunity to work with him and gained valuable experience in social issues.
February 5, 2010
Director Triple R Alliance
Chris is part of that unique breed of managers who dares to be transparent, acknowledges to need to reach out to the broadest group of stakeholders and pursues that engagement with the highest level of integrity. He is an example for the industry!
February 7, 2009
Alumni Friends of The University of Queensland Inc.
Alumni Centre, Building 91C, The University of Queensland
Brisbane, QLD 4072 Australia
To Whom it may Concern,
This letter is to support the nomination by Dr. Stuart Grassie of Dr. Chris Anderson as University of Queensland Alumnus of the Year for 2013.
I first met Dr. Anderson in the early 1990s in the board room of the South Australian Museum. I joined as a member and as Chairman Elect. Dr. Anderson, then Head of Anthropology for the Museum, was putting an argument to the Board for the return to Aboriginal custodians of remains of their ancestors that had been found by archaeologists some decades previously. Although the collection was important to scientists it was also critically important to Aboriginal people and the discussion centred around who had ultimate rights to this significant cultural material. The Board agreed to the return of the material but the subsequent consultation – led by Dr. Anderson – and ensuing relationship established with the custodians, led to the museum being granted the right to continue to hold and care for these remains. This result was to be the hallmark of Dr. Anderson’s skilled work in crossing cultural boundaries as he moved into the role of Director of the South Australian Museum – balancing sides in complex cultural and political situations for good, practical and fair solutions for all relevant parties. Anderson, his staff and the Board raised more than $14m and the support of Aboriginal communities across the country for the development of the Australian Aboriginal Cultures Gallery in Adelaide, Australia’s premier exhibition of Australia’s national collection of Aboriginal cultural material. This was twenty years ago when Aboriginal issues tragically were not discussed as they are now.
In his other pioneering museum work – including the resolution of the issue of repatriation of Central Australian Aboriginal Secret/Sacred material, the co-curation and execution of ‘Dreamings: The Art of Aboriginal Australia’, a landmark book and exhibition at the most significant art museums in the United States and the profound redirection of museum policy in Australia (via his Vice Presidency of Museums Australia, chair of the Commonwealth’s Cultural Property and moveable culture programs, etc.), Anderson has truly made a mark in the national relationships between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal peoples. As a member of the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation throughout its nine year existence, I recognize the significance of his work in this field and am deeply appreciative of it.
I am also aware of his academic work leading to more than 40 publications, both scholarly and public and his television and documentary work – bringing the vitality and continuity of Aboriginal culture to a broader public. This work was done in addition to pro-bono consultative work for Aboriginal organizations, the Royal Commission into Deaths in Custody, land claims, Native Title and similar, on behalf of north Queensland and central Australian groups. This work has earned him a number of awards including a UN (Australia) Human Rights Award and the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for Race Relations (US). I understand in his earlier academic work at the University of Queensland, he also won the Australian Psychological Society Prize.
Dr. Anderson’s skills, experience, achievements – and most importantly, his abilities to empathize, communicate and negotiate in a variety of cultural settings – led me, ultimately, to invite him to work with me in my company, Australia’s largest gold producer, Normandy Mining Limited, from 1998 to 2002. In a senior executive capacity, Anderson worked in difficult settings and sensitive political situations in Turkey, Indonesia, New Zealand, Australia and Ghana. He worked with Normandy to hopefully enable us to ultimately become the developer of choice for Aboriginal communities around the nation.
In 2002, Newmont Mining Corporation of the United States and the world’s largest gold producer acquired Normandy and Newmont promoted Dr. Anderson to their headquarters in the US as Group Executive, Social Responsibility, reporting directly to the CEO. He subsequently spent more than six years leading Newmont’s new project developments in Ghana. In that setting he used his wonderful communication and cross-cultural skills to win over stakeholders from local chiefs to the presidents of Ghana, leading to two successful gold projects in that country operating with broad community support.
The last two years have seen Dr. Anderson join, as an executive, Rio Tinto PLC, the world’s second largest diversified mining company and work successfully with communities from Mongolia to Guinea to the far north of Canada. I understand he now chairs the International Council on Mining & Metals Human Rights & Indigenous Peoples Taskforce.
Dr. Anderson, beginning from the excellent and sound academic grounding he received in his years both as a student and a teacher at the University of Queensland, moving through his museum work and his Commonwealth cultural property and arts policy work, personified the best of public scholarly science applied particularly to the field of Aboriginal culture and reconciliation with the nation. In the last decade he has successfully brought this experience and humanistic perspective to the private sector and particularly to mining. In this last regard, he has not only brought about success for companies in their efforts at economic development in rural and remote settings around the world, but changed how this is done with a major focus on communities and negotiating mutually beneficial results.
I highly recommend Dr. Anderson to you for the Alumnus award.
Robert Champion de Crespigny AC