Meet the Keynotes



Alex Benay
Digital Innovation Expert & Executive

Alex Benay is a global leader in the digital economy. His work has centred on how artificial intelligence and other digital technologies influence global structures, governments and organizations. His expertise in providing the leadership that industries require in order to make significant changes for the future has been instrumental in their success and ability to pivot. He has helped lead Microsoft in a global government cloud strategy and helped his public sector clients implement key digital technologies and solutions, including Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, Data Security and Privacy. 

Mr. Benay is the Digital Innovation Expert & Executive at Microsoft.



Gisela Gips
General Manager, Integrated Planning
ArcelorMittal Mines Canada 

Gisela started her career in mining in 2004, After spending two exploring roads less travelled in Europe after obtaining her degree.   

Cutting her teeth in production as a process Metallurgist in a small mine in the hot, severe and beautiful Northern Cape of South Africa, she gained in-depth experience of Copper, Lead and Zinc flotation, before broadening her experience with roles in Research, Technology implementation, projects, Talent Development, Knowledge Management, Business Improvement, and Transformation.  

Having done both technical and management roles,  been in local operational and global corporate roles, she built a solid operational foundation spanning the total value chain in base metal, Iron Ore and Coal commodities as well as broad global mining business understanding that helps drive a strategic view of how mining could be.  She has lived and worked in mines in Ireland and South Africa spent extensive time in South American and Australian operations and has recently moved to Canada to take up the position of General Manager: Integrated planning for ArcelorMittal Mines Canada (AMMC). 

She is accountable for leading the design and implementation of the Integrated planning practice for AMMC (Pit to Port) and the further expansion of the IROC, as well as driving smart solution development with a small data analytics and technology team.  

In every role she has been in, there has been a theme of unlocking potential, whether in an orebody or production step through smarter mining, process improvement and technology implementation or in people through development frameworks, coaching and authentic connection.   

She is excited about the potential of the digital revolution taking place, and the emerging paradigm-shifting developments in AI.     

She envisions a future where technology is in perfect harmony with the planet and its people.    She is also a mom to two small wonderful high-energy humans, who keep her grounded and teach her more about herself and life than any role in her career could ever do.    

Saad Hameed
Director of Operations
IROC, ArcelorMittal Mining Canada 

Saad Hameed has dedicated over 15 years to mining operations, strategic project development, finance and continuous improvement. Along with the IROC, he developed several strategic projects for both mine technology (Autonomous Drilling) and mine expansion (Fire Lake). Mr. Hameed believes that a people- and data-driven approach, collaboration, and advanced situational awareness can achieve sustainable business transformation.

Currently the Director of Operations for the Integrated Remote Operations Centre (IROC), Mr Hameed is known for improving asset performance with limited resources.

Pierre Lapointe 
Strategic Advisor, Digital Transformation

Pierre Lapointe is a digital transformation expert with over 25 years of experience in mining and manufacturing. With expertise in operational excellence, organizational change, business transformation and lean manufacturing, Mr. Lapointe has successfully brought workplace business processes and technologies to a world-class level. Mr. Lapointe joined ArcelorMittal Mines Canada in 2012 as General Manager, Operational Excellence and was appointed CEO in 2014. His work there has left a positive and lasting impression on the company. Mr. Lapointe is currently Strategic Advisor, Digital Transformation at BBA.