The Canadian Mining Hall of Fame was conceived by the late Maurice R. Brown, former editor and publisher of The Northern Miner, as a way to recognize and honour the legendary mine finders and builders of a great Canadian industry. The Hall was established in 1988. For more information about the extraordinary individuals who have been inducted into the Hall of Fame, please go to their home website: http://mininghalloffame.ca/
John Zigarlick, Jr. was a visionary mine-maker and company-builder who left an enduring legacy in Canada’s North through innovative infrastructure development and the formation of progressive Aboriginal business partnerships. As head of Echo Bay Mines in the 1980s, Zigarlick conceived and led construction of the world’s largest winter road in order to service the Lupin gold mine, which he built using air support due to its remote location 400 km northeast of Yellowknife.
The Tibbitt to Contwoyto road was a daunting challenge, as 75% of the 568-km route was built over lake ice, making it the largest ice road of that time. Under Zigarlick’s leadership, Lupin became one of Canada’s top gold producers while Echo Bay grew from a net worth of $7 million in 1979 into a North American producer with a 1992 market capitalization of approximately $2 billion.