Phoenix President Leo Fox addresses more than 200 Russian and Canadian dignitaries assembled in the SPMI Conference Hall. The central portrait is of Catherine the Great, the Empress of Russia who founded the Institute 230 years ago.
Inset: Leo Fox congratulates Canada
At the opening of the Phoenix laboratory at SPMI, the Institute
The Phoenix Geophysics Room, a laboratory with state-of-the-art geophysical research equipment acquired from Phoenix, is now open at the St. Petersburg State Mining Institute (SPMI), St. Petersburg, Russia.
The official opening on September 30 took place the same day Canada's Governor General Adrienne Clarkson received an honourary doctorate from the Institute during her state visit to Russia. Her degree was conferred by Rector Prof. Vladimir Litvinenko.
The Governor General and her entourage were in St. Petersburg during a three-week visit to Russia, Finland and Iceland. The visit focused on living and working in the modern north, and on reflecting the creative cultures of the circumpolar world.
Six Phoenix employees were privileged to take part in the ceremonies, receptions and cultural events surrounding the visit: Phoenix President Leo Fox, Vice-President Olex Ingerov, geophysicists Alex Golyashov, Yann Avram and Caroline Finateu, and newsletter editor Audrey Hutchison Fox.
The morning of Sept. 30, more than 200 Russian and Canadian dignitaries assembled in the Conference Hall of the Institute for the granting of the degree, including the Vice-Representative of the President of Russia for the North-West Region of Russia, the Vice-Governor of St. Petersburg, the Scientific and Trustee Councils of the Institute, staff from the Canadian Consulate (St. Petersburg) and Canadian Embassy (Moscow), as well as prominent Canadians accompanying the Governor General.
Flag bearers preceded the Governor General and the Rector into the beautiful Russian Empire-style room, to the music of the Canadian national anthem and the hymn of SPMI. Newspaper reporters, photographers, and TV crews, recorded the proceedings.
The Governor General gave the keynote speech that focused on Canada