Who We Are
Board of Directors
Mark Brennan | Executive Chairman
Mr. Brennan is Executive Chairman of Vanadium One Iron Corp. He is a Founding Partner and Executive Chairman of Ascendant Resources Inc. and Cerrado Gold’s CEO and Co-Chairman, and has more than 30 years of financial and operating experience in the Americas and Europe. Mr. Brennan most recently served as president and CEO of Sierra Metals Inc., a major zinc-lead-silver-copper mining company with operations in Peru and Mexico. Prior to that, he was the president and CEO of Largo Resources Ltd., and a founder of several resource companies, including Desert Sun Mining, Brasoil Corp., James Bay Resources, Morumbi Oil and Gas, and Admiral Bay Resources.
Maria Virginia Anzola | Director
Ms. Anzola has over 20 years of experience advising companies in the extraction industry. In her previous role as General Counsel, Ms. Anzola provides leadership and direction on all legal matters involving Ascendant and its operations. As Corporate Secretary, responsible for all matters relating to the Board of Directors, its committees, and the overall implementation of corporate governance best practices. Prior to joining Ascendant in 2017, Ms. Anzola served as Assistant General Counsel for Primero Mining Corp, and prior to that she served as Senior Counsel for Hudbay Minerals Inc. In addition, Ms. Anzola served as Consultant to the Tax Group of Borden Ladner Gervais LLP for over two years. Prior to moving to Canada, Ms. Anzola spent 11 years in private practice in her home country of Venezuela, mostly advising international companies engaged in the oil and gas business. Ms. Anzola has been called to the BAR in Ontario and Venezuela and has an LL.M from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and from Osgoode Hall Law School.
Dennis Moore | Director
Mr. Moore is an exploration Geologist with 40 years of international experience. He is the President, CEO and founder of Fremont Gold Ltd. He was previously and Executive Director and former VP Exploration of Magellan Minerals Ltd. where he assembled a 200,000-hectare exploration portfolio in Brazil including Cuiu Cuiu and Tacntinzinho gold properties.
Casper Groenewald | Director
Mr. Groenewald has over 20 years of mineral processing experience in Africa and the Americas. He is the Senior Vice-President of DRA America and former Technical Director fro Largo Resources where he led the commissioning and optimization of its Vanadium processing facility in Brazil. He is the former Operations director at Minopex, where he managed the operation of five diamond mines, and has also worked for Vantech (Xstrata’s Vanadium division), Highveld Steel and Vanadium Corporation.
W. John Priestner | Director
Mr. Priestner is the former General Manager of US operations for Philip Environmental, where he was responsible for development and construction management of large waste-management facilities. He is a former professional football player in the NFL and CFL over eight seasons and served on boards for CFL Pension Advisory and Benefits Committee.
Cliff Hale-Sanders | CEO and Director
Mr. Cliff Hale-Sanders is an entrepreneurial and driven mining executive, a co-founder of Ascendant
Resources Inc in late 2016 and has over 20 years of capital markets experience as an Equity Mining
Research Analyst. During his career, Mr. Hale-Sanders visited and evaluated numerous global mining
development and production facilities to determine their investment potential. Mr. Hale-Sanders has a
Masters’ degree in Business Administration from McMaster University, a Bachelor of Science degree in
Geology and Chemistry from the University of Toronto and is a C.F.A Charter holder.
Alonso Sotomayor | CFO
Mr. Sotomayor is a Chartered Professional Accountant (Ontario) with over 10 years of progressive financial reporting experience in the mining sector. Mr. Sotomayor started his career in a mining-specific role with accounting firm McGovern Hurley LLP, followed by progressively senior roles in the Toronto Mining Groups at KPMG LLP and Deloitte Canada overseeing files on numerous Canadian listed mining companies. Since 2017, Mr. Sotomayor has held the position of Corporate Controller of Ascendant Resources Inc and as Corporate Controller of the Company since November 2019. He holds a B.B.A. in Management and Accounting from the University of Toronto.
Pierre-Jean Lafleur | VP, Exploration
Mr. Lafleur is a professional engineer and qualified person (NI 43-101) specializing in mineral resource estimation, exploration and mining. He worked in Operations for various mining companies of over 15 years including Falconbridge (no Glencore) and has worked on Iron ore projects around the world, with a focus on those in the Chibougamau area and around Quebec.
Hubert Vallée | VP, Project Development
Mr. Vallée graduated from Laval University in Engineering. He joined Québec Cartier Mining as Project Engineer and was promoted to Director of Operations for its Pellet Plant in 2001. He managed the Iron Ore Company of Canada’s Pellet Plant in Sept-Iles before joining Domtar Inc. as Manager of its pulp mill in Lebel-sur-Quévillon. He joined Consolidated Thompson (Bloom Lake) in 2006 and was one of the key people who made this project happen from early stage development into production, acting as Vice President of Development and as Senior Vice President, Operations and Logistics. After the sale of Consolidated Thompson to Cliffs Natural Resources, Mr. Vallée acted as Vice President Project Development for Phase II of Bloom Lake’s operations. He has also been involved as Senior Vice President, Project Development, at Century Iron Mines. From February 2014 to September 2016, Mr. Vallée acted as President and CEO of Lamelee Iron Ore Ltd. He is currently self-employed and working, with Tacora Resources Ltd. In addition, Mr. Vallee sits on the Board of Genius Metal Inc. as an independent director and is involved with various other junior company’s at the development stage.
Clinton Swemmer | VP, Project Development
Clinton brings over 20 years of Project Delivery experience to his role at Vanadium One. Most recently, he
was Vice President of Project Delivery for Treasury Metals where he managed the Study and Trade-Offs
to maximize net present values (“NPV”) and meet the technical requirements for the Environmental and
Permit process. In addition, as Vice President Project Delivery, North America for Ausenco, an EPC/M
(“Engineering, procurement, construction/ management”) company focused on the metals and mining
industry, he managed teams responsible for EPC Awards of the Magino Gold Mine, the Las Chispas Mine
and the Blackwater Gold Mine. Clinton was also responsible, while at Ausenco for reviewing all Pre-Feasibility Studies (PFS) and Feasibility Study (FS) execution strategies and layouts at mines such as the Marathon Gold Mine and the Springpole Gold Project. As Director of Projects, Mining and Minerals for AmecFosterWheeler, he acted as Project Manager for the Kinross Gold Round Mountain and Bald Mountain Projects, and was actively involved in the development of the IAMGOLD Côté Gold Project and managed the portfolio for PFS and FS that included the Spring Valley Gold Mine and the Sukhoi Log Gold Mine. In addition, he also served as Vice President of Projects for DRA Americas responsible for all PFS, FS, and Projects in the region that included delivery of the Renard Diamond Mine processing facility in Quebec, Labrador Iron Mines processing plant and numerous cold weather projects.
Michael Skutezky | General Counsel and Corporate Secretary
Mr. Michael Skutezky has had a 30 year career in the financial sector in Canada including as Assistant
General Counsel at the Royal Bank of Canada focused on International and Canadian Project financing
based in Montreal and Toronto and as Senior Vice President Personal Trust, National Trust Company. He
is Chairman of Rhodes Capital Corporation, a private Toronto based resource and technology focused
merchant bank. Mr. Skutezky has been a founder in taking public and listing several TSX, TSX-V and CSE resource sector companies and has served as an officer, counsel and director of several private and
public companies. He has been a member of the Canadian and International Bar Associations, the Law
Society of Upper Canada and the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Association.