Cliffs names Halverson CEO

ISHPEMING – Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. announced Thursday that its Board of Directors had appointed Gary B. Halverson, formerly president and chief operating officer, to president and chief executive officer, effective immediately.

Halverson, 55, also serves as a director on Cliffs’ board.

“We are confident that Gary is the right candidate to lead Cliffs given his proven experience with international and long-term mining operations and understanding of the global commodities industry,” James Kirsch, Cliffs’ chairman of the board, said in a news release, “Since joining Cliffs, Gary has executed a number of key strategic initiatives to strengthen the Company and enhance value for all Cliffs’ shareholders.”

Halverson said he was “very honored to take the helm and lead Cliffs, a company with such a rich heritage and even greater prospects for the future.”

“I am focused on operational excellence and financial discipline in order to reposition the company for success. We have an extraordinary senior team at Cliffs that is committed to driving success for the company,” Halverson said. “Collectively, I am confident that we will create long-term value for our shareholders, employees and other stakeholders.”

Cliffs’ officials said Halverson’s experience spans across the gold, copper, and nickel mining industries. Prior to joining Cliffs in 2013, he provided leadership for the largest gold region in the world at Barrick Gold Corporation Inc. He has experience managing large annual operating budgets and capital projects.

Cliffs officials said that at an operational level, Halverson has been successful in optimizing well run mines, objectively assessing troubled operations and executing projects on-time and on budget. Many of the projects he has led included complex tailings and water management issues. These experiences include a wide range of underground and open-pit mines from the construction and development phases through the end-of-life stage.