Art Ettlinger (B.S. Geological Engineering, 1979; M.S. Mining Engineering, 1981) passed
away in Vancouver, B.C. on February 27, 2011, after a brief battle with cancer. He is survived
by his wife Joanna, son Blaze, siblings Scott and Stacy and their children.
Art was born in New York City on June 28, 1957 and grew up in the city, where he acquired his
distinctive Brooklyn accent. As a teen, Art worked at Yankee Stadium selling hot-dogs and beer
and became a loyal fan of the Bronx Bombers. After a year of college in the city, Art decided to
pursue his interest in geology and engineering by enrolling at Michigan Technological
University. Moving from the “Big Apple” to the “End of the Earth” must have been quite a
challenge for the city boy, but with his thirst for adventure and eagerness to experience the world
beyond the city, Art embraced his new surroundings. Here he developed his love for geology,
the outdoors, remote lands, and small towns while still honoring his roots by cheering for the
Yankees and driving a taxi-cab in Houghton and Hancock.
In 1979, Art graduated with a B.S. degree in Geological Engineering and quickly found a job
with Schlumberger in Arkansas. After a year as a field logging engineer, Art decided that it was
time to return to MTU where he entered the Mining Engineering M.S. program in 1980. In his
typical hard working, efficient manner, Art finished his M.S. in 1½ years with a thesis titled
“The Effect of Increasing Energy Costs on Unconventional Haulage Systems in a Hypothetical
Open Pit Mine” under the supervision of Dr. Rudy Greuer. During this time he deepened his
love for the U.P. and developed life-long friendships with several Geology and Mining graduate
students and professors. Those that knew him at this point in his career have fond memories of
his passion for geology, close friends, and life. There was never a dull moment when Art was
present, and he left a lasting impression on everyone whom he met socially or professionally.
After completing his M.S., Art took a job with Chevron Resources in 1982 as a mine
geologist/engineer at uranium, platinum and gilsonite properties. Working at a gilsonite mine in
Utah may not have matched Art’s interest beyond geology, but he made the most of it, and began
planning the next phase of his professional career. In 1985, Art entered the Geology Ph.D.
program at Washington State University in Pullman, WA (a Houghton-like small town in eastern
WA). His first summer as a doctoral candidate would prove to be a formative time in his career
because he took a consulting job with Falconbridge exploring for gold skarns on Queen Charlotte
Island and northern Vancouver Island in British Columbia. Art’s newly ignited passion for
skarns led to a dissertation topic of “A Geological Analysis of Gold Skarns and Precious Metal
Enriched Iron and Copper Skarns in British Columbia, Canada,” under the supervision of Dr.
Larry Meinert. As a doctoral student at WSU, Art developed an expertise in skarn research that
few others had. He worked closely with the British Columbia Geological Survey in Victoria
conducting field work at skarns such as Nickel-Plate, Zeballos Fe-Au, and Cu-Au skarns on
Texada Island, while analyzing and modeling these deposits back at WSU. Art never missed an
opportunity, and when the chance to visit a Cu-Au skarn in the USSR arose in 1988, he grabbed
it, learned to speak and read Russian, and was off to Siberia. That excursion led to another 3
week trip to visit a variety of ore deposits in the Soviet Far East in 1989. Art was actually one of
the first American geologists to visit many important mines and mining districts in the USSR.
After completing his dissertation in 1990, Art’s vast experience landed him the first Post-
Doctoral research position offered by the newly formed Mineral Deposits Research Unit
(MDRU) at the University of British Columbia. Here he began a long-term association with the
Eskay Creek gold deposit in the Iskut region of B.C.
After a year as a Post-Doc, Art took his diverse background to industry and worked for Orvana
Resources, exploring in B.C. and then for Santa Fe Pacific, where he explored for gold in the
Carlin trend of Nevada. In 1996, as if he weren’t diverse enough already, he added a new
dimension to his background by working as a mining analyst for Yorkton Securities in
Vancouver, BC and Calgary, AB. Analyzing global mineral deposits and mining companies
took Art to classic mining districts on every continent and further deepened his understanding of
the business aspects of mining. Because of a depressed metals market at this time Art quickly
established himself as an expert in diamond properties and exploration. After several years as a
mining analyst, Art was prepared to apply his vast minerals, mining, engineering, exploration,
and investment experience to guide small exploration companies. In 2000, he became President
and CEO of Dunsmuir Ventures, a junior company that featured diamond exploration in Canada.
His success in this role led to a merger and Art moved on to become COO for Golden Predator
Mines, Inc. guiding exploration in Canada and the U.S. His latest enterprise was as President of
Rocks and Stocks Management Corp., working with Monster Mining Corp. in the Yukon, and
advising Eskay Creek Mining Corp., where he had started his post-educational geological career
21 years ago.
Throughout his impressive career, Art never lost touch with his friends and associates from
MTU, WSU, UBC, Orvana, Santa Fe Pacific, Yorkton, Dunsmuir, Golden Predator, and
countless other explorers. Art was known throughout the industry as an exceptional geologist,
with an unparalleled diversity of experience. He was a loyal friend, colleague, father, and
husband. Art took great pride in his son Blaze, with whom he shared several Bruce Springsteen
concerts, the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Cancun Mexico, gold panning, and a few
summers in the Yukon. Recently, Art met and married the love of his life, Joanna, an
exploration geologist as well, who shared his zest for life and geology. Art always knew how to
get the most out of life and enjoyed road-trip adventures, baseball, hockey, fishing, black-jack,
model and real rockets, small towns, nature, novel beverages, and annual visits to the Keweenaw
where he had planned to build a summer home.
A scholarship in Art’s memory has been established at MTU and will be awarded to students in
the Department of Geologic/Mining Engineering and Sciences. Contributions can be made in
any of the following ways:
1. Telephone: Michigan Tech Fund - 906-487-2310
Designated for the "Art Ettlinger Memorial Scholarship"
2. On-Line: https://www.banweb.mtu.edu/mtu/mtf/gift/give.xsql?desig=Art Ettlinger Memorial Scholarship
Check the box for 'Please direct my gift as indicated below' and see that it indicate "Art Ettlinger
3. By Check Mailed to: Michigan Tech Fund
Michigan Technological University
1400 Townsend Drive
Houghton, MI 49931
Include a note or write directly on the memo part of a check "Art Ettlinger Memorial