Ray started in the Mining Extractive lndustry in 1966 at
Mahon's Coal Mine at Rotowaro.
Mahon's was a board & Pillar mine and it
was the last of those type of mines in the area.
Ray worked through all the mining stages from the screens through to trucking shift work then onto the face, first on the banjo then the scraper loaders. ln 1978 he went to the West Mine which at the time was one of two mechanised mines in Huntly. He was involved in all the work from the face and back-bye finishing up on the Winder operating the dolly car, which was the main rail transport in and out of the mine. ln 1987 there was the big change from State Coal to S.O.E's. (Coal
Corporation) and although Ray was offered a job in the new structure
the United Mineworkers decided to employ him as a full-time National
official. Ray had been involved with the Miners Union previously while
employed with State Coal Mines, first been elected as the District
Secretary of the Waikato mine workers Union in 1977.
Ray has been a full-time Union official since. During that time he has been involved in many organisations within the Mining Industry. He has been on the N.Z. Mines Rescue board for over twenty years since it was restructured as a Trust. I was on the EXITO (Extractive lndustries Training Organisation) Board from when it started to when it was merged into MITO. During that time I was deputy Chair for two years and Chairman for two years.
Since Pike River Ray has been involved with WorkSafe and the High
Hazard Unit, the new Mining regulations and the associated Codes of
Practice & Guidelines. He was also involved with MITO revising the