Lightning has struck more than once so far in Eira Thomas’s career of more than 25 years. The geologist famously spotted a nearly 2-carat diamond in drill core — an incredibly rare occurrence — during exploration at Lac de Gras in 1994, at what would become the Diavik mine in the Northwest Territories.
And as a founder and director of Lucara Diamond (TSX: LUC), she was part of the leadership when the company unearthed a 1,109-carat stone — the second largest diamond in history — at its Karowe mine in Botswana in November 2015.
“I’ve been very fortunate,” said Thomas in an interview in May. “Those were obviously two exciting milestones for me in my career, but I think with each and every project that I’ve worked on there’ve been those moments.”
While those moments have not always been so dramatic, they have been extremely satisfying and meaningful, she adds. “A lot of it has to do with being involved in a good project with good people,” says Thomas, whose father Grenville Thomas is one of the pioneers of Canadian diamonds as a founder of Aber Diamond.
Other “good projects” that Thomas has been involved with: As a cofounder and CEO of Stornoway Diamond (TSX: SWY), she led the junior through the first phases of acquiring Renard in 2007 — now Quebec’s first diamond mine — and then through an extremely successful advanced exploration program.
And as CEO of Yukon junior Kaminak Gold, she spent three years advancing the Coffee gold deposit before negotiating the company’s $520-million acquisition by Goldcorp (TSX: GG) in 2016.
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