Dr Nicholas (Nick) Stump

30 November 2009

Award of Doctor of Engineering honoris causa
Mr Nick Stump


Mr Nick Stump has more than 40 years’ worth of experience in the mining and metals industries both in Australia and overseas.

In 1970, after graduating from the University of Adelaide, he joined the CRA Group (now Rio Tinto) in a career spanning 25 years.

His first position in Broken Hill as process control metallurgist led to him joining a group that pioneered the development of on-stream analysis and computer control techniques that continue to be applied to mineral-processing plants globally. Mr Stump’s achievements were internationally recognised when he jointly received the prestigious Arthur Taggart Award from the American Institute of Mining Engineers in 1976.

His career then turned to operations management, firstly at Mary Kathleen Uranium then ascending to roles as President of a Comalco subsidiary in the United States, Commonwealth Aluminium, before becoming Chief Executive Officer of Comalco Ltd.

Mr Stump was appointed Chief Executive of MIM Holdings Ltd in 1995, a position he held until his retirement in 2001. During this period, he served a term as President of the Minerals Council of Australia.

Since his retirement, Mr Stump has remained active in industry and government engagement.

He was appointed Chairman of GroundProbe Pty Ltd. Formed as a spin-off from UQ in 2001, the company develops and supplies unique measurement systems and services to the international mining and civil infrastructure industries. Its Slope Stability Radar technology has already achieved outstanding success in the global open pit mining industry, having detected more than 100 wall failures with sufficient warning to evacuate people and equipment. Equally successful are the company’s Geophysical services which are also being widely used in mining and infrastructure industries.

Mr Stump is also a Director of John Holland Group Pty Ltd, Ludowici Ltd and Australia 21 Pty Ltd – an independent, non-partisan, non-profit research organisation which builds networks of outstanding people from diverse backgrounds to develop a sustainable and flourishing future.

A University of Queensland Senator since 1996 and a member of the Finance Committee since 1997, Mr Stump has also been Chair of the Sustainable Minerals Institute (SMI) Advisory Board and its predecessor, the Sir James Foots Institute of Mineral Resources.

He was one of several senior Brisbane-based mining executives who formed the backbone of the Council of the Sir James Foots Institute of Mineral Resources from 1997–2000.

Starting in the latter part of 1999, Mr Stump worked closely with Professor Don McKee and Mr Bob Bryan to develop the concept that became the SMI. Mr Stump was actively involved in the establishment of the SMI, and the form of the SMI today owes much to his contribution and vision.

The fact that the SMI broke new ground in establishing initiatives such as those involved with safety, social responsibility and water is a result of Mr Stump’s appreciation of and dedication to the concept that the industry of the 21st century requires more than just developments in traditional technology areas.

Chancellor, in recognition of his distinguished career and service to the University, I present to you Mr Nick Stump (Master of Applied Science in Metallurgy from the University of Adelaide) for the award of Doctor of Engineering honoris causa bestowed by the Senate of The University of Queensland.


Doctor of Engineering honoris causa