Meet the Season 5 VIP Voting Panel

Heyda Vass

Live Event Emcee: Heyda Vass

Heyda Vass – Industrial Hygiene Coordinator, Luck Companies

Heyda Vass, is the Industrial Hygiene Coordinator for Luck Companies, the nation’s largest family owned and operated producer of crushed stone, sand, gravel and aggregates with facilities from Maryland to Atlanta, GA.  She is currently assigned to oversee Industrial Hygiene Program and requirements for MSHA and OSHA regulated sites.  She previously served in the Environmental Health and Safety roles in the pharmaceutical and chemical industries, where she collaborated on the development and execution of policies and procedures to reduce health hazards.  Mrs. Vass’ other leadership roles include developing and managing critical programs such as Process Safety Management (PSM), new products project manager, OSHA Volunteer Protection Program (VPP) coordinator and process and packaging validation.  Mrs. Vass holds a Master’s degree from the University of Puerto Rico, Medical Science Campus.  She currently has her quality auditor certification from the American Society for Quality and an Associate Safety Professional from the American Society of Safety Professionals. Mrs. Vass is also called “abuela” by her two grandkids, Mya and Noah.

VIP Voting Panel


Meg Roman – Director of Corporate Communications and Content, Komatsu

Meg Roman is the Director of Corporate Communications and Content for Komatsu. She leads the team responsible for Komatsu’s brand strategy, as well as all content development for the global mining division and all of Komatsu’s North America businesses. With more than 20 years’ experience in organizations ranging from public education to multi-billion-dollar global corporations, Meg has a passion for cultivating big ideas and bringing them to life. She received her undergraduate degree from Michigan State University, her Executive MBA at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee, and is a Certified Change Management Professional (CCMP).


Tom Milligan – Co-founder and Owner, Western Ohio Cut Stone

Tom Milligan, co-founder and owner of Western Ohio Cut Stone, is past President of the Ohio Aggregates and Industrial Minerals Association and a past board member of the National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association.  He is an inductee of the Ohio Aggregates and Industrial Minerals Association Hall of Fame. Fluent in Spanish, Tom has a long-term involvement with Presbyterian Mission in Colombia, South America and currently serves as Boardmember-at-Large of the Corporacion Universitaria Reformada, a fully accredited Presbyterian institution of higher learning based in Barranquilla, Colombia.


Allison Coppel – Director of Value Assurance, Newmont

Allison Coppel was born in Washington, DC. She holds an MBA from Stanford University, a Masters in Development Economics from the University of Nice (France), and a Bachelor’s in International Relations from Emory University (Atlanta). In the mining industry, she has worked at BHP Billiton, Antamina, Teck, Anglo American, and now is with Newmont as the Director of Value Assurance, which conducts technical reviews of investment proposals, following five years as the Director of Social Responsibility. Prior to mining, she consulted for international development organizations such as the World Bank and CARE. She has lived or worked in the US, Mali, France, Spain, Guatemala, Chile, and Peru, and speaks English, French, Spanish, and some Portuguese.

Nancy Morales headshot

Nancy Morales-Arango – Business Development Manager for Mexico, Bureau Veritas Minerals

Nancy is a business professional with proven success in diverse international roles which have taken her to Mexico where she is currently residing. She has over 15 years of experience in marketing, branding, sales and business development in primarily leadership positions and works now in the mining industry. Born and raised in Orange County California she studied graphic design and in her spare time she volunteers her time to the SME she is currently SME president for Mexico and founder of Women in Mining in Mexico and North Mining Apparel.