Mining Safety Leadership Medal


Mining Safety Leadership Medal

For exceptional contribution towards improving mining health and safety results within the mining industry in Canada

Origins & Conditions


Sponsored by the CIM Council and awarded for the first time in 2018, the Mining Safety Leadership Medal recognizes the exceptional contribution by an individual or organization towards improving mining health and safety results within the mining industry in Canada through innovative means. To encourage new entrants to this arena, and thereby expand the number of contributors to mining safety and health, preference shall be given to those candidates who have not previously been recognized or received awards related to this area, especially within CIM.

For clarity, within the concept of this award, the following definition of mining safety and health is used:

Safety is measured in results such as injuries and fatalities.

Health is measured in recognized chronic or traumatic illness resulting from workplace conditions. It includes mental illness and leading and lagging indicators.

The Mining Safety Leadership Medal criteria and other information:

  1. The Mining Safety Leadership Award is bestowed for exceptional contribution towards improving health and safety within the mining industry, recognizing either an innovative initiative and/or achievement, or consistent achievements, over an extended period (at least three years).
  2. The award shall be presented annually and preference shall be given to an individual or organization who/that has not previously been recognized or received awards related to this area, especially within CIM.
  3. Each nomination is to be accompanied by a statement (no more than 250 words) clearly outlining the achievements and qualifications of the nominee.
  4. Adjudication of the award shall be undertaken by the Awards Committee of the CIM Safety Committee. This committee will consist of up to seven (7) members including:
    (a) Award champion: the CIM Safety Committee chair and/or designated committee member representative. This person will manage the receipt and review of nominations, help identify judges, etc.
    (b) Past recipient of the award
    (c) Members from at least three (3) societies (chair or designate)
  5. The Committee shall designate a recipient from among the nominees for presentation to CIM Council, no later than the last Council meeting held prior to the annual CIM Convention.
  6. The award shall be presented at the CIM Convention.
  7. All nominations properly presented shall remain in good standing for a period of three (3) years unless formally withdrawn as indicated by the signatures of a majority of members responsible for the nomination.


There is only one recipient of this award each year. This award may be given to an individual or an organization.

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Don MacLean

Don MacLean grew up in mining towns in the Abitibi region of northern Quebec. He graduated from Acadia University and McGill University in 1959 with a degree in Mining Engineering. After graduation, he worked underground for International Nickel (INCO) when underground mining was transitioning from rail-based equipment to mobile equipment. After witnessing the issues workers faced, he recognized the need for a safer working environment. MacLean subsequently worked for Ingersol Rand in Montreal before moving to Thornbury and JMG Engineering. In 1973, he founded MacLean Engineering to develop innovative mobile equipment solutions to address a range of mining issues and improve worker safety. He revolutionized safety in the mining industry with the development of the Blockholer, Scissor Bolter and, more recently, battery operated bolters and equipment. MacLean Engineering celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2023 and is now the world’s largest Canadian-based manufacturer of underground equipment with over 1,100 employees on four continents. 


Shawn Rideout

Since 2015, Shawn Rideout has been chief mine rescue officer for the province of Ontario. His prior mining background is rooted in operations and contract mining.  A native of Timmins, Ontario, Rideout received his Introductory Ontario Mine Rescue Certification in 2006 while with Falconbridge Kidd Creek Mine (now Glencore Kidd Operations). He served as an active mine rescue volunteer responder in the Timmins District before joining the Ontario Mine Rescue program based out of the Sudbury headquarters.  

In his role as chief mine rescue officer, Rideout is responsible for overseeing all underground mine rescue training, preparation, and emergency response activities within the province.  This includes the staff of District Mine Rescue Officers, a province-wide inventory of mine rescue response equipment, and the assurance of emergency response capability at all operating mines within Ontario. During his 7 years in the role, Rideout has worked quickly to improve standards and procedure, modernized equipment and drastically improved the capacity and availability of mitigating controls available to the many Ontario mine operators in the form of mine rescue response should an unexpected event occur. 

Since 1929, the Ontario Mine Rescue program has been a standardized province-wide collaboration between all mine operators working to ensure emergency response capability and reduce the risk profile of the work performed by the over 900 Ontario volunteer responders.