Former BlackRock mining fund manager joins Barrick Gold

Former BlackRock mining fund manager joins Barrick Gold

Catherine Raw is now Barrick’s Business Performance Executive Vice President. (Image: Screenshot from ABC News)

Canada’s Barrick Gold (TSE, NYSE:ABX) has lured Catherine Raw, from one of the UK mining sector’s best known fund managers, into joining its executive team as the embattled gold miner deals with weak prices, shareholders anger and potential fines related to its shelved Pascua-Lama project in Chile.

Raw, until now a co-manager at BlackRock’s largest mining fund, is assuming as Barrick’s Business Performance Executive Vice President. According to the company’s website, she will report directly to chairman John Thornton and is expected to play a key role in the struggling company’s strategy development and execution.

“[Catherine Raw’s] background, combining a foundation in geology with over a decade of experience in mining investment, brings a unique skill-set and deep insight to Barrick, complementing and enhancing the capabilities of the company’s leadership team,” says the company website.

The new executive became notorious last year for her highly critical view of most of the world’s largest gold miners’ performance and strategy. She said in December the sector needed “to start seeing some really painful decisions being made.”

Prior to joining BlackRock in 2003, Raw worked at Anglo American (LON:AAL) in London and Johannesburg and as a geological field assistant in Sweden.

She is the first female executive ever hired by Thornton since he succeeded founder Peter Munk as chairman one year ago. He has replaced most of the company’s top executives since then.