Management Team and Directors

Management Team

W. Thomas Hodgson, MBA (Executive Chairman)
  • Mr. Hodgson is an independent financial consultant and Chairman of Greenbrook Capital Partners Inc.
  • Mr. Hodgson has previously served as a consultant and advisor to the Chairman of Magna International, one of the world’s largest automotive suppliers
  • Also previously served as a consultant to, and as President and CEO of, Magna Entertainment Corp, and as a Director of MI Developments Inc.
John Kanellitsas, MBA
Interim CEO, Director
  • Mr. Kanellitsas is the Chief Operating Officer of Geologic Resource Partners, an investment manager focusing on global mining and metals resource industries
  • John has worked in financial markets and asset management for over two decades with positions at prominent investment banks and money management firms in San Francisco, New  York and Sun Valley, ID. He has been a director of numerous private and public companies and currently also serves as a director of Kiska Metals Corporation
  • He has a Masters of Business Administration from University of California at Los Angeles and a BS degree in Mechanical Engineering from Michigan State University
Franco Mignacco, MBA
Vice Chairman
  • Mr. Mignacco is the President of Minera Exar, Lithium Americas’ operating subsidiary in Argentina. He is responsible for overseeing the development of the Cauchari-Olaroz lithium project, as well as for overseeing relations with local governments and communities.
Michael Cosic, MBA, CFA
Chief Financial Officer
  • Mr. Cosic is a business executive with 20 years of experience in a variety of industries.
  • Prior to joining Lithium Americas, Mr. Cosic was Vice President Business Development at ADP Inc.
  • He has considerable experience in evaluating, structuring, managing and executing global transactions.
Hugo Barrientos, Civil Eng.
Engineer Project Manager
  • Mr. Barrientos is an experienced engineer with over 20 years of experience working for major multinational companies.
  • He was previously a Chief Project Engineer at SQM, the world’s largest producer of lithium. He was responsible for leading engineering and construction projects that develop on Lithium Carbonate and Lithium Hydroxide Facilities, located in the Salar del Carmen, as well as in Potassium Chloride Facilities, located in the Salar de Atacama, both in Chile.
  • Project Engineer for Unilever Chile. Programmer and Cost Control Engineer for Sigdo Koppers SA.
  • Graduate studies in Projects Management, accredited by Association of PM in UK and Diplomate in Management at the University of Chile.


David D’Onofrio, CA
  • Mr. D’Onofrio is a chartered accountant who is currently the CFO at PowerOne, a merchant bank in Toronto, Ontario
  • Mr. D’Onofrio is also a member of the Institute of Corporate Directors and continues to act as a Corporate Director to several publicly listed companies


Douglas Reeson, MBA
  • Mr. Reeson is an independent financial consultant and business executive with experience as an officer and director of a number of junior public companies
  • Currently a Director to several publicly listed companies
  • Previously the Executive Director of Listings for the Toronto Stock Exchange, Vice-President and Director of Davidson Partners, Midland Doherty and Yorkton Securities
 Constantine Karayannopoulos, BASc, MASc, PEng
  •  Interim CEO and Director of Molycorp.Inc
  •  Former President, CEO, and Director of Neo Material Technologies Inc
  •  Mr.Karayannopoulos is a Director of the Canada China Business Council and a member of the Board of Advisors to the Department of Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry at the University of Toronto.


George Pirie
  • Mr. Pirie is an accomplished mining executive with over 29 years of experience in exploration and production companies.
  • He was previously the President and Chief Executive Officer of Breakwater Resources Ltd. and prior to that, he held a series of progressively more senior positions during a distinguished 20 year career at Placer Dome Inc., including Chief Financial Officer, and President and Chief Executive Officer of Placer Dome Canada, and Executive Vice President of Placer Dome Inc.
  • Mr. Pirie also has extensive board of director experience having served on a number of boards, including the Mining Association of Canada. Among other roles, he is currently the President and CEO of San Gold Corporation.
Paul Fornazzari Paul Fornazzari
  • Partner of the law firm Gowling, Lafleur, Henderson LLP