Sherritt Hydrometallurgy Award


The Sherritt Hydrometallurgy Award was established in 1976 by Sherritt Gordon Mines Limited (now Sherritt International Corporation), to recognize MetSoc members who have made a significant contribution in the field of hydrometallurgy through research, plant design and operations and education or CIM affairs. The award consists of dual, engraved medals and a cash prize. The award is presented by a representative of Sherritt International Corporation at the Annual Hydrometallurgy Section Meeting.


2021 Recipient

Niels Verbaan


Niels Verbaan has over 20 years of experience in the Minerals Industry. Having earned Masters degrees in Raw Materials Processing (Delft University, The Netherlands) and Hydrometallurgy (McGill University), Niels started his career at Lakefield Research (now SGS) in 2000 as a Project Metallurgist. In 2003-2004 he worked as an R&D Manager at Hydrometal (Belgium), where he was responsible for evaluating new raw materials. He re-joined SGS in 2004 carving out a unique path to his current role as Technical & Business Development Manager, Metallurgy. At SGS he is responsible for the development of new opportunities in the North American metallurgical sector and also supports SGS’ global network of metallurgical labs.

Niels has authored or co-authored around 30 technical publications and two patents related to the processing of critical materials. He has chaired biannual symposia on the Processing of Critical Materials since 2014.

Niels’ areas of expertise include general metallurgical process development, management of complex hydrometallurgical pilot plants, and data compilation, analysis and presentation to clients. He offers expertise in a wide range of commodities, with a strong focus on rare earth elements, scandium, nickel, cobalt, vanadium, niobium and minor metals.



Past Recipients of the Sherritt Hydrometallurgy Award
1977 – G.M. Ritcey
1978 – A.W. Ashbrook
1979 – G. Van Weert
1980 – D.A. Huggins
1981 – R.W. Stanley
1982 – G.M. Swinkels
1983 – V.A. Ettel
1984 – J.E. Dutrizac
1985 – D.R. Weir
1986 – R. Berezowsky
1987 – P. Garritsen
1988 – V.I. Lakshmanan
1989 – R.C. Kerby
1990 – P. Claessens
1991 – B.R. Conard
1992 – I.M. Masters
1993 – L.I. Rosato
1994 – D. Dreisinger
1995 – B. Harris1996 – B. Krysa
1997 – C.A. Fleming
1998 – D.W. Ashman
1999 – G. Houlachi
2000 – G. Demopoulos
2001 – C.J. Ferron
2002 – I. Mihaylov
2003 – K.S. Fraser
2004 – V.G. Papangelakis
2005 – M. Collins
2006 – P. Kondos
2007 – J. F. Turgeon
2008 – No Award
2009 – Derek Kerfoot
2010 – David G. Dixon
2011 – Michael E. Chalkley
2012 – Eberhard Krause
2013 – Y. Choi
2014 – E. Peek
2015 – E. Lam
2016 – L. Centomo
2017 – J.R. Goode
2018 – T. T. Chen
2019 – No Award
2020 – M. Dry


Candidates must be CIM members who are either a Canadian citizen or an individual who, while resident in Canada, made significant contributions to the advancement of Hydrometallurgy. Exceptions to this membership requirement may be made in the case where a candidate has a substantial historical record of contributions to MetSoc.

The Awards Committee of the Hydrometallurgy Section administers the award.



  1. Nominations for the award shall be accompanied by not fewer than five (5) members endorsements of CIM.
  2. A testimonial statement giving clearly the reasons that make the nominee a suitable candidate shall accompany each nomination.
  3. A citation of 15 words maximum The citation should read “In recognition of…”
  4. Other supporting data (e.g. curriculum vitae) can be included if desired.

If the CV does not contain all items, the nominator should fill in the information in the Contributions text box in the online form (this will be available in the software system when the Call opens).

Start Nomination

Please refer to the REQUIREMENTS & PROCESS FOR NOMINATION webpage.



  • A nominator can put forward only one candidate up for nomination in each award category (as of 2020)
  • No Member of the MetSoc Executive Board shall be nominated while in office. The nomination will be held until the term on the executive board is expired.
  • The nominators are responsible for verifying that all conditions of the award have been satisfied and all procedures were properly followed in making the nomination.
  • The award shall be made from time to time as circumstances warrant in recognition of significant contributions to the advancement of Hydrometallurgy through research, plant design and operations, education or CIM affairs.
  • Nominees shall remain in nomination for three years, and at the end of that period shall be eligible for renomination in the manner specified above.
  • The adjudication of the award shall be made by the Awards Committee of the Hydrometallurgy Section of the Metallurgy and Materials Society of CIM. The Committee shall consist of (a) an Awards Chair, appointed from within the Hydrometallurgy Section, who is either a previous Sherritt Hydrometallurgy Award winner or otherwise ineligible to receive the award, and (b) the five immediately previous Sherritt Hydrometallurgy Award winners. If the Awards Chair is one of these, the sixth most recent award winner will join the Committee.
  • Self-nominations are not permitted.
  • No more than one award may be made in any one year.
  • At the completion of the Awards Committee adjudication, the Awards Chair shall notify the Hydrometallurgy Section Chair of the Committee’s selection.  The Hydrometallurgy Section Chair should, in turn, forward the dossier on the recipient to MetSoc’s Awards Committee Chair for approval by this Committee and subsequent ratification by the MetSoc Board of Directors.
  • The award, including the testimonial, should be presented at the Annual Hydrometallurgy Section Meeting. The Section may invite the recipient to deliver a special lecture during the Section Meeting.
METSOC is a constituent society of the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM).
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