Thomas J. O’Neil
2003 Inductee into American Mining Hall of Fame
Thomas J. O'Neil recently retired as the President and Chief Operating officer of Cleveland-Cliffs Inc. and President of the Cleveland-Cliffs Iron Company and Cliffs Mining Company. Prior to joining Cleveland-Cliffs, Dr. O'Neil spent 10 years with Cyprus Minerals Company and its previous owner, Amoco Minerals Company. At Amoco, he served in various capacities including President, Engineering and Development, Vice President and General Manager, Cyprus Sierrita Corporation and Vice President, South Pacific Operations, stationed in Sydney, Australia.
Before joining Amoco, Dr. O’Neil was Professor and Head of the Department of Mining and Geological Engineering at the University of Arizona, where he was a faculty member for 13 years. He is currently President of the Society for Mining, Metallurgy and Exploration (SME) and was elected to the National Academy of Engineers in 1999. He is also a director and Chairman of the American Iron Ore Association and a director of the National Mining Hall of Fame and Museum, as well as the Mineral Information Institute.
Dr. O’Neil holds a B.S degree in Mining Engineering from Lehigh University, an M.S. degree from Pennsylvania State University, and a Ph.D. degree from the University of Arizona. His individual specialty is the theory and practice of mineral economics in mineral development and operations. He is co-author of the book, Mine Investment Analysis, published by SME and used as a text worldwide in the teaching of mineral economics. Dr. O'Neil received the “William Lawrence Saunders Gold Medal” award of the AIME in 2003, recognizing distinguished service in mining other than coal. He had previously been awarded the “Robert Peele Award” of SME in 1970, and was elected AIME “Henry Krumb Distinguished Lecturer” in 1982. He was elected “Centennial Fellow” College of Earth & Mineral Sciences, Pennsylvania State University in 1996.