Directors & Officers


Zarko Meseldzija

Interim Chief Executive Officer, Director

Zarko Meseldzija has a range of industry experience with a deep insight in project management, process development projects, and circular economy strategies. Zarko holds a BSc. in Mining Engineering from the University of Alberta and obtained his MBA from the Beedie School of Business.

Andris Kikauka

P.Geo, Director

Andris Kikauka is a graduate of Brock University, St. Catharines, Ont., with an Honours Bachelor of Science Degree in Geological Sciences, 1980. He is a member of the Geological Association of Canada. He is registered in the Province of British Columbia as a Professional Geoscientist.

Andris has practiced his profession for thirty five years in precious and base metal exploration in the Cordilllera of Western Canada working for Anaconda Canada Exploration (1980-1984), Skyline Explorations, Inel Resources, Gulf International Minerals (1985-1989), in South America working for Carson Gold (1990), in Mexico and Guatemala working mineral exploration projects for Francisco Gold and Almaden Minerals (1996-2006) and for three years in uranium exploration in the Canadian Shield working for Rayrock Mines and Uran-Canada (1977-1979).

Ed Skoda


Edward Skoda obtained a Diploma in Mining Engineering Technology from the Haileybury School of Mines in Ontario in 1971 and a Diploma in Business Management from the British Columbia Institute of Technology in 1979. Mr. Skoda has over 30 years of experience in the mining industry in which time he has worked on many national and international projects. During the past 15 years, Mr. Skoda has worked as a consultant and in a supervisory capacity as a shift boss, superintendent, or project manager for various mining and exploration companies. Based out of Guadalajara, Jalisco, Ed oversees all Mexico operations for SJ Geophysics Ltd.

Paul Hildebrand

PhD, LLB, M.Sc, Chair of the Board

Paul Hildebrand is Associate Counsel at Lidstone & Company. Paul is the head of the law firm’s Litigation Department. He won the Gold Medal in law at the University of British Columbia in 1980. Paul has a Doctorate in Economics in addition to his Law Degree and Master of Science degree in mathematics. For nearly 29 years, Paul Hildebrand has practiced law in the area of complex litigation, including a 12 year stint with McAlpine & Company, one of the leading complex litigation firms in Canada. Paul is responsible for the conduct of our local government clients’ litigation matters, including defense of claims, insurance matters, suing other parties, injunctions, appeals, and other litigation related matters. He also has expertise in regard to arbitration, mediation and conciliation. He has done securities work, including financings for public and private companies, and real estate transactions.

Shaheem Ali

BBA, Chief Financial Officer, Director

Shaheem Ali is a finance and business management professional with 10 years’ experience in operations management, full cycle accounting, systems development and people management. Proven record of implementing financial and operational processes reducing operations costs and improved internal controls with Alderwoods Group Inc. where his experience includes governance and regulatory fund compliance with various states.

Teresa Piorun

Senior Corporate Officer

Teresa Piorun has been with the Reaugh Group of Companies for thirty years. Ms. Piorun is a senior corporate officer with wide-ranging responsibilities, serving as a focal point for communication with the board of directors, senior management and the company’s shareholders, and occupies a key role in the administration of critical corporate matters. She is the confidant and advisor to the CEO and other members of senior management, particularly on corporate governance affairs.

Jochen Rudat

Advisory Board

Mr. Rudat has an illustrious background and reputation in the electric vehicle (EV) industry. He has spent 10 years working under Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, where he helped launch Models S, 3, X and Roadster in Europe. Jochen was hired by Elon Musk to build a sales and marketing force in Europe that grew to nearly 300 employees during his tenure.

Before Tesla, Mr. Rudat worked for several prominent car manufacturers such as BMW, Kia and Porsche. Most recently, he served as Chief Sales Officer at Italian luxury carmaker Automobili Pininfarina to launch its electric hypercar, Battista. Moreover, Mr. Rudat is the founder of Electric Ventures, a consultancy service focused on investments in sustainable transport.

Shailesh Upreti

Advisory Board

As announced by New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo on October 4, 2017, Dr. Upreti will lead an initiative to establish a lithium-ion battery giga-factory in New York.

Shailesh Upreti is a well-respected lithium-ion technology expert and inventor of multiple breakthrough technologies. An IIT Delhi graduate, Mr. Upreti has worked closely with Professor Stan Whittingham in the past and holds multiple US patents and their foreign equivalents in more than 30 countries. In addition to his technical degree he has a second masters in international business management in combination with extensive experience as an entrepreneur. Shailesh has successfully brought more than 5 different technologies to market including one in the material recycling space.

His 16 years of extensive experience includes bringing new products to market, business development, lithium-ion supply chain & industry networking, downstream processing and investigating organizational performance gaps. He is well integrated into the global battery industry and serves on various advisory boards. Shailesh is particularly adept in defining corporate commercial objectives, business support programs and achieving organizational goals while bringing new technology to market.

Kurt Lageschulte

Advisory Board

Kurt Lageschulte is a Partner and Senior Analyst at Broadbill Investment Partners, LLC in New York. Broadbill Partners is an investment firm with offices in New York, Florida and California and currently has $130 million of assets under management across four managed funds. Kurt is a founding partner at Broadbill, and was previously employed as a Senior Analyst with Aspen Advisors from 2002 to 2010. Kurt has worked as an advisor and active member of a number of committees. Most recently, he has advised the Special Committee of the Penn Treaty American Company board in a complex negotiation with industry regulators. Kurt’s experience in the energy, renewable and mining industries, coupled with significant expertise in the capital markets will enable Kurt and the Broadbill team to help American Manganese in the reaching of its goals in the coming years.

David Langtry

Technical Advisor

David Langtry has been a businessman since 1964 when he joined Langtry Agencies, a company which expanded nationally to become Langtry Industries and was sold in 2011 to ITOCHU, a Japanese conglomerate specializing in commodities. Mr. Langtry currently owns and operates Raider Hansen Inc., an industrial supplies company having 10 locations throughout British Columbia, as well as GRE Manufacturing, a glass recycling company. He also holds 10 worldwide patents. Mr. Langtry has a life time of experience in technology and financial markets.

Dan McGroarty

Strategic Advisor

Daniel McGroarty has consulted for nearly two decades to firms in the resource sector, with a focus on strategic and critical metals. He is principal of the non-profit American Resource Policy Network, a resource development think tank. He has served as a critical materials subject-matter expert for the U.S. GAO; testified before the energy and natural resource committees of the U.S. House and Senate; consulted to the Institutes for Defense Analyses, which provides research and analytical work to the U.S. Department of Defense for its National Defense Stockpile reports; and currently serves as Adjunct Professor at The George Washington University Graduate School of Political Management. Prior to establishing his consultancy, Dan served as Special Assistant to the President in the White House and as presidential appointee to two Secretaries of Defense.

James J. (Jim) Hahn

Advisory Board

Jim comes from a career of 40+ years in the Specialty Tool and Fastener Industry.  He has held management positions in patented product development to include Powder Actuated Fasteners, Adhesives, and Coatings. Additionally, he has worked domestically and internationally in the development of Concrete Anchoring Systems leading to successful market introductions. These introductions were attained through independent product testing to meet strict industry codes and final evaluation agency approvals.

At Hilti, Inc. Jim achieved the highest level of sales locally, regionally and nationally. He was awarded multi-million-dollar sales club recognition for his work with a previously poor-performing territory, and was recognized multiple times as a President Club’s winner at national conventions, having set regional and national sales records annually.  Jim received a special award from ITW Corporation for the development of a national training program for certain industrial products.  He was a founding member of the Concrete Anchoring Manufacturing Association in 1996. Last but not least, Jim was a PGA professional golfer after he graduated from college where he earned an AA degree in Applied Marketing and a BA in Business Administration.