Qld's first female certified deputy

THE Queensland Board of Examiners has issued its first Deputy Certificate of Competency to a woman, Sarah Coughlan, of Anglo American’s Grosvenor mine.
Qld's first female certified deputy Qld's first female certified deputy Qld's first female certified deputy Qld's first female certified deputy Qld's first female certified deputy

Sarah Coughlan from Anglo American's Grosvenor mine became Queensland's first deputy.

The board said it anticipated a busy year for 2020, with a projected increase in candidates and many projects being initiated, including the gender diversity strategy.

"This is an exciting step forward for the board and industry, and the board extends its congratulations to Sarah Coughlan for achieving this significant milestone," it said.

"The Board of Examiners recognises the importance of encouraging gender diversity in the mining sector - which ultimately drives improved safety and productivity outcomes."

The board has started drafting a plan to encourage gender diversity at the board and more broadly to help driving diversity in the sector.

It hopes to release that plan next year.

"It is also encouraging to see a significant increase in oral exam candidates in the last Quarter of 2019, with 21 oral examinations being undertaken," the board said.

The board has approved the issue of the following Certificates of Competency: seven open cut examiners, eight deputies, one second class mine manager in underground coal, and one first class mine manager in underground coal.

Anglo American Metallurgical Coal business CEO Tyler Mitchelson said the company was committed to supporting the next generation of mining industry leaders.
"We're very proud to have five newly qualified deputies in our ranks, including Queensland's first female deputy, Sarah Coughlan," he said.
"Sarah's qualification is a significant milestone on the path to improving inclusion and diversity in underground mining, and I extend my sincere congratulations to her. We're looking forward to seeing more women and men join the deputy ranks very soon.
"Deputies perform a critical role in our underground mines, and this is part of our program to support the development of coal mining competencies within the business."
Coughlan was first introduced to the mining industry through the Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy (QMEA) during her high school years at Nanango State High. From there, she studied mining engineering at university and then began work as a graduate mining engineer with Anglo American.
"After starting my career in the mining industry, I knew I wanted to work underground and this program was a natural next step for me," she said.
"There has been a group of us working towards our Certificate of Competency over the last four years and we've all supported each other through the process.
"I'm glad to have had this development opportunity and am really looking forward to taking on additional responsibilities as I build my career in underground mining.
"We are fortunate to work in an amazing industry that can be both rewarding and challenging. Over the last couple of years, I've proudly shared my journey with students through QMEA and QRC and will be continuing to support those who are interested in joining the mining industry; having a good network of people around you always helps."