Management team

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Benoit La Salle, FCPA., CPA.

Position: President and CEO
Mr. La Salle is a Fellow Chartered Accountant, a member of the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants and holds a Commerce Degree and a Masters of Business Administration. In 1980, Mr. La Salle founded Grou, La Salle & Associates, Chartered Accountants. In 1995, Mr. La Salle founded SEMAFO Inc. and held the position of President and Chief Executive Officer of the organization until August 2012. Mr. La Salle is the former Chairman of the Board of Plan International (Canada), one of Canada’s leading NGOs. Today Mr. La Salle is President and CEO of Windiga Energy Inc. a Canadian based Independent Power Producer focused on renewable energy assets in West Africa, Chairman of Algold Resources Ltd (TSX: ALG), a gold exploration company with assets in Mauritania and Burkina Faso, Chairman of Sama Resources Inc. (TSX: SME), a base metal exploration company with assets in Côte d’Ivoire and Guinea and Chairman of the Canadian Council on Africa.
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Ugo Landry-Tolszczuk

Position: Director of Operations
Mr. Landry-Tolszczuk has served as Windiga Energy's Director of Operations since its inception in 2010. His responsibilities include project development along with the company's operations. Prior to joining Windiga Energy, Mr. Landry-Tolszczuk held several positions in related fields, including Product Manager for peripherals and Web Controllers for Distech Controls, a building automation and energy management solutions company. Mr. Landry-Tolszczuk holds an honors bachelor of Applied Science in Computer Engineering from the University of Waterloo.
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Elie Justin Ouedraogo

Position: General Manager Windiga SA
In 1982, Dr. Ouedraogo earned his PhD in Economics at Jules Vernes de Picardie-Amiens University, France. In 1990, he became the general manager of the society for mining research and exploitation of Burkina. Given his deep knowledge of the mining sector, Dr. Ouedraogo was called upon by the Government to become Minister of Mines and Energy. A position he held from 1995 to 2000. After his government work, he went on to accrue international experience as an administrator of the Institut de Formation et de Recherche Démographiques, in Cameroon. Since 2007, he has served as National Director of SEMAFO. In 2011 he founded and was elected as Burkina Faso’s president of the Chamber of Mines. Along with his position at SEMAFO, Dr. Ouedraogo holds the position of General Manager of Windiga Energy Burkina Faso S.A. and Windiga S.A., the public-private partnership responsible for the development of the first solar power plant in his country. For his numerous contributions to the nation of Burkina Faso, Dr. Ouedraogo has been awarded with the honorary distinction of Commander of the National Order.
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Elias J. ELIAS, LL.B. , LL.B.

Position: General Counsel and Secretary
Elias J. Elias joined Windiga Energy in December 2013 as General Counsel and Corporate Secretary. His responsibilities include overseeing the legal framework for business operations, maintaining and optimizing corporate structure, corporate governance, in addition to acting as Secretary. Having articled with the H. Judge Otis of the Quebec Court of Appeal, Elias practised in mergers and acquisitions in a national Canadian firm and then acted as legal counsel responsible for the wholesale and international divisions at Gildan Activewear, a vertically integrated manufacturer with operations in Central America, the Caribbean and the United States. Mr. Elias also acted as legal advisor for SEMAFO Inc., a gold mining company with operations in Guinea, Burkina Faso and Niger. Elias holds both a civil law degree (summa cum laude) and a common law degree (cum laude) from the University of Ottawa and is a recipient of the Canada SSHRC Graduate Scholarship. He is a member of the Barreau du Québec.
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Simon Parent-Pothier

Position: Project Development Director
Working at Windiga Energy since 2013, Mr. Parent-Pothier is a qualified geographer and planner. He is responsible for the selection and development of the new project opportunities and oversees the management of different advanced projects within the company’s pipeline. In the last years, Mr. Parent-Pothier has been helping the company with structuring pre-feasibility and feasibility studies for all the greenfield projects, while ensuring that they properly respond or even exceed senior lenders requirements. In the past Mr. Parent-Pothier has conducted various investigation projects in Honduras, Argentina and Brazil on land tenure, water infrastructure and urban revitalization strategies. He then worked for some time as an independent consultant in planning and economic development for private and public clients such as the City of Montreal. Mr. Parent-Pothier have also had experience in institutional and political relations while working as a political analyst for one of the largest mayor’s union of Canada.
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David Vilder

Position: Health, Safety, Environment & Community Manager
Mr. David Vilder, B.A, M.Env, with degrees in Political Science and Environmental Assessment, is the Health, Safety, Environment and Community Manager at Windiga Energy. Mr. Vilder has previously worked as a consultant on several mining projects throughout West Africa since 2014. Mr. Vilder specializes on Environmental and Social Management System implementation, Resettlement and Livelihood Restoration planning, and Impact Assessment, and has comprehensive knowledge of IFC Performance Standards and Equator Principles. Since early 2017, he has put his experience and skills at the service of Windiga Energy.
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