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Advisory Board


Eric Peterson, PhD | Advisory Board Member


Dr. Eric Peterson leads the Process Science and Technology Business Line at the Idaho National Laboratory and is also a Consulting Scientist at the Laboratory where he has spent the past 22 years performing research on polymeric and related materials. His research has varied from the most fundamental understanding of molecular interactions to construction and proving of pilot facilities using the materials that he has been active in developing. Dr. Peterson received undergraduate education in chemistry and biology at Concordia College in Moorhead, MN, his Ph.D. from Montana State University in Bozeman, MT, and did postdoctoral training in polymers at University of Missouri-Rolla (1.5 years), and solid phase inorganic chemistry at the Ames Laboratory, Ames, IA (1.5 years).Eric has authored/coauthored 86 peer reviewed archival articles, 25 peer reviewed DOE reports, 3 book chapters, and has authored/coauthored 13 issued US Patents with 6 patents pending. His awards include: two INL Lifetime Achievement Awards (December, 2008 and March, 2003); the DOE Bright Light Award for the Best Invention over the Past Twenty Years at a DOE Lab (March, 2000); and the DOE Energy 2000 Award for the Top Innovation of the Year at a DOE Facility (April, 2000). for the Top Innovation for the year at a DOE Facility. Eric’s professional affiliations include a Member of the American Chemical Society, its Inorganic Chemistry Division, and the Engineering and Industrial Chemistry Division, Serving Member of ACS’s Committee on Corporation Associates and is the Liason to the ACS Board of Director’s Committees on Patents and Related Matters, and the Committee on Graduate Education as well. He is a Member of The North American Membrane Society, Member of the American Institute of Chemical Engineering, Member of Friends of the Sea Otter, Member of the American Alpine Club, Member of the Idaho Alpine Club, Member of American Mountain Guides Association (Certified as a Mountain Guide –Rock Discipline).During FY 2006 Eric served at the National Science Foundation in the Directorate of Engineering’s Chemical Transport Systems Division running the nationally visible Separation Processes and Purification Program as a Visiting Scientist Engineer/Educator (VSEE). Since his return to the Laboratory Eric has established and grown the Laboratory’s Process Science and Technology Business Line.Dr. Peterson and Dr. Richard Hammen have interacted since the mid-1990’s when Eric was Project Manager and Richard was Principal Investigator on a Department of Energy Funded pilot project to use Dr. Hammen’s metal chromatography technology for the recovery of valuable metal products from the acid mine drainage water at the Berkeley Pit superfund site in Butte, Montana. 


Gary Billingsly, BSc, CA | Advisory Board Member


Born in Flin Flon, Manitoba, Mr. Billingsley has a BSc. degree in Geology from the University of Saskatchewan. He is also a Chartered Accountant and a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Saskatchewan; a Professional Engineer and a Professional Geoscientist and a member of the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Saskatchewan. For fourteen years, until 2012, Mr. Billingsley served as a director and officer of Great Western Minerals Group Ltd., a TSX-V listed company. He currently serves as a director of Star Minerals Group Ltd., listed on the Canadian Stock Exchange and Wescan Goldfields Inc., Canadian Platinum Corp., and Jiminex Inc., all listed on the TSX-V.


Mr. Billingsley has worked in the mining industry for the past 45 years. He was employed as a mine geologist for several years for companies including Granduc Operating Company (an affiliate of Newmont Mining), Hudson Bay Mining & Smelting Co. Ltd., and in surface exploration for Cominco Ltd., Sherritt Gordon, and Hudson Bay Exploration and Development Ltd. In 1983, Mr. Billingsley joined Claude Resources Inc., serving as a director and officer until 1992. With Claude, he was a key part of the team that brought the Seabee Gold Mine (Saskatchewan’s largest producing gold mine with over 1 million ounces produced and still producing) into production, and participated in the discovery of diamond- bearing kimberlite in the Sturgeon Lake area of Saskatchewan. In 1993 and 1994, in his role as a consultant to Great Western Minerals, Mr. Billingsley led the team that discovered two diamond- bearing kimberlites, at Candle Lake, Saskatchewan. For the last ten years he has focused on the rare earth industry and formulated the “mine to market” strategy currently being implemented by Great Western Minerals through the development of its mining project in South Africa along with operating two value-added manufacturing facilities specializing in the production of permanent magnet alloys. He currently sits on the Management Committee of the Hoidas Lake Joint Venture, operated by Star Minerals, advancing the development of the Hoidas Lake rare earth project in northern Saskatchewan.


Jim Houlden, MBA | Advisory Board Member


Mr. Jim Houlden has over 35 years of experience in the aerospace industry. He ran superalloy melting operations for Cameron Iron Works, and was the president Wyman Gordon Forgings (a subsidiary of PCC Forgings). He was also the Senior Executive Vice President of material sourcing for PCC. Mr. Houlden received a M.Sc. degree in Metallurgy, and his M.B.A. from University Aston. UK. Mr. Houlden is assisting Metals U.S. in sourcing metal recycling opportunities in the Aerospace industry.


Phillip Hammen, PhD | Advisory Board Member


Dr. Phillip D. Hammen is the brother of Richard Hammen, and he encouraged Richard to pursue a career in Chemistry that ultimately led to the development of the Solid Phase Extraction technology. Dr. Hammen received his B.A. degree from St. Olaf College (1963) and Ph.D. (organic chemistry) from the University of Minnesota in 1967. He then joined the Central Research division of Pfizer Inc. in Groton, CT. Most of his career was in the Developmental Research department. He retired in 1999 as Senior Research Advisor. He worked on process development for many of Pfizer's pharmaceuticals, preparation of the chemistry sections of several New Drug Applications (NDA's), and as a mentor to numerous younger Ph.D's from the US and England. He also led a small group for the resolution of crystal related problems, and for resolution of process and crystallinity related manufacturing problems. He did the process development and wrote the chemistry sections of the NDA's for Feldene, Tenidap, Rimadyl and Aricept. He was the "Pfizer expert" for Aricept with Esai Corp. (Japan) and directed manufacture of the first US pilot plant and commercial supplies. Dr. Hammen is the author of several US patents and peer-reviewed publications.


Robert L. Delaney | Advisory Board Member


Robert L. Delaney and his brother Donald L. Delaney have been involved in the mining and timber products businesses for over fifty years and have owned controlling positions in a number of mineral and rock claims in Montana and Idaho. The Delaney Brothers have over 45 years experience running a mill that processed graphite ore and tungsten, and later operated a gold mine and mill, in addition to holding significant copper claims. They are also familiar with opportunities for micro-mining and processing mine tailings, including potential sites bearing rare earth elements as well as precious metals. In addition to their mining expertise, the Delaneys owned and operated five timber mills in the northwestern United States. They also acquired and developed the second largest wholesale lumber company in the United States. The Delaneys were past Directors of the Timbers Products Manufacturing Association.


The Delaney family was initially involved in the startup of the Southgate Mall development in Missoula, Montana. Robert served on the development board of small forest products manufacturers spearheaded by Dr. Ben Huey of the Bureau of Land Management to work to facilitate issues related to the industry. He also was the Director of a Multi-state SBIC. Don served on the International Olympic Committee for the Luge and Bobsled competition. The Delaneys were involved in a Joint Venture with Georgia Pacific (GP) in the development of timber lands in the Western U.S. Robert continues to be active in the mining industry and continues to pursue opportunities in the spirit that he and his brother Donald (recently deceased) did. 


George Song | Advisory Board Member


Mr. George Song has 35 years experience in the nonferrous metals industry and aerospace industry. He has been the President of Shangxiang Minmetals Inc. since 1992. He is a Professor of Central South University, China, a member of International Molybdenum Association (IMOA), and a member of Minor Metal Trade Association (MMTA). Mr. Song has a depth of relationships in the strategic metal industry in China and the U.S. He will assist Metals US in market development and metal processing partnerships.


Stephan Edwards, MA, MA | Advisory Board Member


Stephan Edwards is a communications catalyst. As a social scientist, and with over a decade in academia and the non-profit sector, he has studied how local communities react to global markets, and understands how cultural identity shapes consumers' relationships to products and companies. As a certified mediator and facilitator, Stephan has built consensus and navigated change for multiple organizations, including businesses, cities, state and Federal government agencies, Native American Tribes, non-profits, and universities.​ He has conducted public scoping for the Montana State Water Initiative and the Northern Rockies Climate Change Workshop, and taught communication and conflict resolution seminars for Leadership Missoula, the Wyoming Water Quality and Pollution Control Association, and The University of Montana.


A specialist in natural resources conflict resolution, complex multi-party negotiation, and cross-cultural communication, Stephan has built multi-level communication strategies that work, both inside and outside of organizations. Stephan holds Masters degrees in cultural anthropology from Brandeis University and history from the University of Connecticut, as well as a graduate certificate in natural resources conflict resolution from the University of Montana. Formerly, Stephan was a Visiting Scholar at Salem State University and Assistant Professor of History and Political Science at Central Wyoming College. He is a Research Associate with the University of Montana's Center for Natural Resources and Environmental Policy and directs a small non-profit specializing in mediation and conflict resolution. He connects with the world from his home base in Missoula, Montana.

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