Townsend has extensive project development, operational and corporate experience predominately in strategic metals with over seven years corporate experience as managing director and chairman of both ASX and TSX listed companies.
From 1999 to 2004, he was responsible as site General Manager for the successful development and expansion of mining and processing operations of what was at the time the world's largest Tantalum Mine at Wodgina in Western Australia.
Townsend was most recently president and chief executive officer of Pacific Wildcat Resources (CVE: PAW), which he had led from 2008.
During this period he has overseen the development of a Tantalum Mine in Mozambique and the acquisition and evaluation of the Mrima Hill Rare Earth and Niobium Project in Kenya.
"His extensive understanding of the rare earth industry, his East African experience and previous corporate roles will be of immense value as Peak moves forward with the development of the Ngualla Rare Earth Project," Peak chairman Alastair Hunter said.
Hunter, who has been serving as executive chairman, will resume his previous position as non-executive chairman.
Peak had earlier this month extended to 20 January its one for five non-renounceable entitlement issue priced at $0.06 per share that seeks to raise up to $3.3 million.
This will fund completion of the Preliminary Feasibility Study and Reserve estimate on the Ngualla Rare Earth Project in Tanzania.
It had also noted recently that Ngualla is now significantly de-risked with a proven, low cost metallurgical process demonstrated 'end-to end' from mineralisation to high purity separated rare earth oxide products.
Ngualla has estimated NPV of US$1.768 billion and IRR of 60%, on the December 2012 10,000 tonne per annum base case scenario, capital costs of US$373 million and operating costs of US$10.18 per kilogram of rare earth oxides.
The project remains on track to achieve rare earth production in 2016.
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