About Mike Casselman
“It is people like Mike who make a difference, not just to our business, but to each of us individually. He shared his accomplishments and experience with generations of geoscientists that he helped develop and mentor over the years. He was highly regarded by his peers and is remembered for the great enthusiasm he brought with him in everything he did.” – Owen Owens, former VP of exploration at Cominco.
Mike Casselman (Jan. 24, 1946 – Jan. 25, 2014) was raised in Trail, BC, and explored the outdoors his entire life. When he was a baby, his mother would for care him in a canoe while his father, a geologist, navigated the nearby area. Eventually, Mike received his BSc from UBC in 1969 and his MSc from Carleton in 1977, and following in his father’s footsteps, he became an exceptional geologist.
Mike’s career highlights include finding and exploring several deposits at Hackett River, NWT; Tulsequah Chief, BC; and at the Pebble Copper porphyry in Alaska. His over 30-year tenure with Cominco, which started in 1969, included two years in Chile where he managed their extensive copper exploration program. From 1996-1999, he was Cominco’s administration manager, international exploration, responsible for administration of Cominco’s programs in six countries.
After Cominco, Mike served as a director, vice-president and technical advisor with the Candente Group of companies, and was a board member with Savant Explorations Ltd. Above his technical contributions to his field, Mike was known by all of his colleagues as a life-long learner, an enthusiastic team player, and a generous and inspirational mentor to many budding geologists. His colleagues at Candente describe him as “a gazelle in the field, energetic, positive, optimistic, a friend and a mentor, loved and admired by his peers.”
Mike loved adventure and was never without his wife, Caroline. From the far north to Chile, and Palm Springs to China, they wandered not one, but many roads less traveled. Recently, Mike’s happiest days were spent at Christina Lake with his family and many of his original Warfield Mountaineers. Mike’s abounding generosity, attentiveness, and fierce loyalty made him a consummate mentor. He was, simply put, the best.
Mike passed away at Vancouver General Hospital surrounded by an outpouring of love and compassion from his dearest friends and family. He leaves behind his wife and best friend, Caroline, his two daughters, Marcie (Greg) and Elysa (Daryl), his grandchildren: Sebastian, Emilia, Ryerson, Marcus and Olivia, and his sister Jane (Darrel).Read More
The impact of your support
The Mike Casselman Field School Award will honour Mike’s memory by providing awards to students at UBC’s Geological Field School based on a combination of academic performance and field aptitude. Field School, in Oliver BC, has been a cornerstone of geological education at UBC since the 1950’s.
Throughout his career, Mike was noted, and loved, for his willingness to share his knowledge and expertise with others. As one of his colleagues observed, “He knew he was strong technically, but…he was special in teaching, mentoring and in excellent communications. He stood high about all the others. There was no one like him.”
Another colleague once told Mike, “You were my mentor….you made me excited to be doing what I was doing. Doing that for me, Mike, was magic.”
The Mike Casselman Field School fund will help support and encourage the next generation of geologists, continuing Mike’s exceptional legacy.Read More
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John F Childs