Brad Ross, as an engineer, teacher, entrepreneur, leader, fossil hunter, family man, author, public speaker and mentor has a wide variety of skills and life experiences. He brings this diverse background to find unique solutions to difficult problems and manage challenging projects then is willing shares those experiences and learnings with others.
After graduating from the South Dakota School of Mines in 1980, Brad became a mining engineer with Shell Mining Company, where he developed an in-depth understanding of mining through his technical work in designing new mines and production work in operating mines in Ohio and Wyoming. During this time, Brad owned and managed a small fossil business, catering to customers from around the world. This combination of technical, operational, and business experiences served him well as he moved into a variety of management positions.
Brad has managed the technical departments in some of the largest mines in the world, including Antelope and Cordero Rojo coal mines in Wyoming, the Rössing Uranium Mine in Namibia, and the Bingham Canyon Mine in Utah. Other assignments included financial controller for the Buckskin Mine in Wyoming and building a team to develop an integrated budgeting model for the five mines owned by Kennecott Energy. Brad also worked with communities and government agencies to purchase water for Resolution Copper Company in water-thirsty Arizona. Each of these jobs had their own critical issues and expanded Brad’s abilities in leading people and managing projects. He became known as a person who could tackle difficult and unusual problems, which resulted in more opportunities to solve problems.
While living in Namibia, Brad and his family traveled throughout the country to meet with and purchase minerals from artisanal miners. Brad studied their living and working conditions, which led to his dissertation on the sustainability of artisanal miners in Namibia. These experiences led him to pursue his masters of engineering degree (2009) and doctoral degree (2011) in mining and geological engineering from the University of Arizona while working full time for Resolution Copper Company.
An integration of these positions and lessons learned seemed to culminate with the largest challenge of all—managing the technical services and planning efforts to prepare for and recover from the unprecedented Manefay event at the Bingham Canyon Mine in 2013. Brad then led the team charged with developing the geotechnical studies and mine planning to demonstrate the long-term viability of the mine.
In 2015, Brad left corporate life and moved to Tucson, Arizona, where he and his spouse extraordinaire, Linda, enjoy the warm weather and have started the next phase of their lives. Not content to sit back and relax, Brad has become an advisor, author, and professor. He established a small consulting firm, 90 Degree Consulting LLC, that provides management advice, technical reviews, expert witness services, and mentoring of high-potential employees. Brad also gives talks about the Manefay and is writing a memoir about growing up in a small town in South Dakota, where his family lived in the county jail building—just a normal part of life when your dad is the sheriff in a remote county on an Indian reservation. In addition, Brad teaches in the Department of Mining and Geological Engineering at the University of Arizona to help cultivate the capabilities of the next generation of mining professionals.