Rio Tinto has appointed Patrick Boitumelo as president and chief operating officer of its subsidiary Diavik Diamond Mines (DDM), the company said Tuesday.
Rio Tinto owns 60% of the Diavik mine in Canada’s Northwest Territories and operates the deposit through DDM. Dominion Diamond Corporation owns the remaining 40% of the asset.
Boitumelo – who will start at the end of July after relocating to Yellowknife, Canada – was most recently general manager of engineering and projects at Kennecott Utah Copper in Salt Lake City, Utah. He has extensive senior experience in the mining industry across a range of asset classes, including diamonds, Rio Tinto said.
The hire comes as Rio Tinto prepares to bring the Diavik mine’s A21 extension onstream, with production planned to start in 2018.