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Q&A with the Chief Executive of the Department for Energy and Mining

27 Aug 2023

We caught up with Dr Paul Heithersay, Chief Executive of the Department for Energy and Mining, in the lead up to the New Leaders Summit in September. .

 Can you give me some background on your career progression, and what lead you into your current role?

I worked in mineral exploration for 20 years principally exploring for copper and gold in Asia and Africa.  I joined the SA Public Sector Service in 2002 as Manager of the Geological Survey of SA rising through the ranks to become Chief Executive of the Department for Energy and Mining in 2016.

What has been your proudest accomplishment in your career?

Proudest moment has been seeing SA transform into the top 10 of mining jurisdictions in the World.

What makes someone a good leader in the mining space?

A good leader in the mining space is a strong collaborator and partner with their workforce, their local community and State and Local Governments.

What would you like to see from emerging mining leaders?

Emerging leaders need to see ESG credentials as a path to adding value to their businesses. The community and shareholders expect that as a minimum.

You will be speaking at the New Leaders Summit in September. Can you give us a taste of what your speech will be about?

My talk will focus on the decarbonisation challenges and the massive opportunities it presents for SA.

Why are events like the New Leaders Summit important for the industry?

The New Leaders Summit create a space to examine our purpose.  Why do we do what we do. It's also an opportunity to see what upcoming leaders see as important to them.

What sets this New Leaders Summit apart from past events?

The ability to stand back a bit from the technical and get clarity on some of the big issues. New Leaders Summit is Australia's premiere event for emerging mining leaders and includes interactive workshops, inspiring keynote speakers and plenty of networking opportunities.

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