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Wesdome goes headhunting for a new CEO

Duncan Middlemiss heads into retirement after six-year run at the gold company
Eagle River Mine (Wesdome Gold Mines photo)

Wesdome Gold Mines announced last week that Duncan Middlemiss, the company’s president-CEO, is retiring and is resigning from the board of directors.

Replacing him on an interim basis is board chair Warwick Morley-Jepson. An executive search firm will find a successor. Middlemiss has agreed to stay in an advisory capacity on a temporary basis.

In a company news release, Morley-Jepson is described as a “seasoned operator with significant experience in the global mining industry,” having worked as executive vice president and chief operating office with Ivanhoe Mines and Kinross Gold Corporation. Morley-Jepson joined the Wesdome board in 2017 and has been board chair since 2019.

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Middlemiss was thanked for his “leadership and commitment” over the last six-and-half years, particularly with guiding Kiena into production during the pandemic. 

“It has been a true pleasure to work with Wesdome since June of 2016 and begin the process of recognizing the potential this company has to realize. I would like to thank the Wesdome team for working tirelessly towards this end and what promises to be a bright future,” he said in a statement.

Middlemiss’ departure comes within a week of some disappointing fourth quarter and year-end production results at its mines in northeastern Ontario and Quebec.

A news release from mid-January called 2022 a “challenging year…with production misses” at the Eagle Mine complex, near Wawa, and the Kiena Mine in Quebec.

Total gold production sold for 2022 was 113,000 ounces, down from 118,501 the previous year.

Production and grades were below expectations at the new Falcon Zone at the Eagle Mine. At Kiena, there were supply chain and ramp development delays that backed up the start of commercial production by months.