Russ Fields has been appointed the new director of the Mackay School of Earth Sciences and Engineering at the University of Nevada, Reno.
“Russ brings extensive experience as a geologist and manager in the petroleum, minerals, and natural resources development industries to the University,” said Jeff Thompson, dean of the College of Science. “I’m excited he’s agreed to accept this challenging endeavor.” The Mackay School, formerly known as the Mackay School of Mines, is a division of the College of Science.
Fields will work with the Mackay School faculty and staff to develop a vision for the School and initiate steps to realize this shared vision. He will represent the Mackay School interests to alumni and the public, be a liaison to external stakeholders and will work to broaden the College of Science’s connection to the natural resource and earth science industries.
“I’m very happy to be here; I’m honored to have the position,” Fields said from his third floor office in the historic Mackay Mines building overlooking the University’s quadrangle. “There’s such a long and proud heritage that’s Mackay. We’re working on a vision for the future – which is extremely bright – to continuing to build on that heritage, to take the school to even higher levels.
“We want to be recognized as one of the leading institutions in the nation, not only for mining but earth science and engineering, which isn’t such a stretch – we have such a great core to build on.”
Fields earned both his bachelor‘s of science in geology (1974) and Master’s of Business Administration (1985) from the University of Nevada, Reno, and was the Mackay Alumnus of the Year in 2005. He has worked with Placid Oil Company, Milchem Inc., Sierra Pacific Resources, the Nevada Division of Minerals, and Western Resources Group, LLC. In addition, he served as president of the Nevada Mining Association for 10 years beginning in 1997.
“It’s a little humbling to sit here, in what was the dean’s office 40 years ago when I was an undergrad,” he said. “I must admit, it was a little scary coming up the stairs to see the dean back then. It’s such an honor to climb those stairs now.”