The relationship builder: Noront vice-president Glenn Nolan is navigating the complicated relationships of the Ring of Fire – by Jax Jacobsen (CIM Magazine – August 20, 2018)

There are very few hats Glenn Nolan hasn’t worn. He has been president of the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada; Chief of the Missanabie Cree; a mining exploration field agent; an entrepreneur and director of a junior mining company.

And now he’s vice-president at Noront Resources, the biggest player in the perennially stalled Ring of Fire camp, charged with navigating relations with both provincial and federal representatives as the company attempts to develop its Eagle’s Nest nickel-copper-PGE deposit. Having spent the majority of his career building relationships between industry, government and First Nations, the role is one Nolan seems perfectly made for.

“I’ve been working in this industry for over 40 years,” Nolan said. “I’ve been very fortunate to have these many opportunities, as Indigenous people don’t have a large depth of experience” in the sector.

Nolan developed his fondness for the industry after seeing firsthand how mining allowed his father to move into stable employment after years of intermittent work as a hunter and guide. “When my dad made the decision to go work at the mine, it changed everything for us,” Nolan said. “My dad finished his career as a miner. He was able to get a trade at the mine, and he had three trades when he finished his working career.”

Nolan’s elder brothers followed their father into the industry, while his mother made a living washing clothes for miners in the camp. Nolan, eager to work outdoors, decided to work in mining exploration.

In 2001 Nolan returned home to become chief of the Missanabie Cree, a northeastern Ontario First Nation located in the Algoma District. During that time, he focused on weaning the community off government funding and working with resource development companies to build partnerships and opportunities for his community.

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