Fred Holabird, Chief Executive Officer
Fred has been active in the mining industry for more than 25 years. He began his career as a mineral exploration geologist, and quickly moved into a position as mine geologist at a producing gold mine. He has always been interested in the historical side of the mining business, and has invested in mining related documents and books for many years. Successfully, he managed a large-scale business dealing with collectible Americana, culminating with the marketing of the Atocha treasure at Caesar’s Palace Hotel and Casino.
Fred is also well-published in both technical and hobby-related mining and western publications. He has been responsible for the discovery and production at two Nevada gold mines, also overseeing their operations. Since running his last gold mine (which also involved the cleanup of extensive mercury tailings and cyanide left by former operators), he has been involved in a lengthy EPA-related mine and mill site cleanup in Colorado.
Currently, he is a professional consultant to many sectors within the mining industry and enjoys traveling around the world with his wife, Robin. His most recent projects include the Treasure of the SS Central America, a ship that sunk in 1857 with tons of gold on board. The ship has been recovered and was the subject of a Discovery Channel documentary.
Meet the Team
Uwe Nikoley was born in Germany and a local University of Nevada Reno graduate, Uwe is an academically-trained electrical engineer. His knowledge of film-era photography raises our photographs to a level of fine art. Working with information technology and Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom, he contributes a keen eye for design that can be seen with each image, advertisement and publication. He is a food connoisseur and former Ultra Distance Runner of Western States marathons.
Travis Lord currently contributes to the production of our auction catalogs as researcher, photographer and image editor.
Born on Okinawa Japan, Travis is a U. S. Navy Gulf War Veteran and former Jeweler at his family’s business, Sierra Moon Goldsmiths in Auburn, California. His 15 + years experience in the Luxury Goods Industry contributes a perspective of history as an investment.
As a former student at the Gemology Institute of America (GIA), Travis is working toward his Graduate Gemologist Certification. When he is not rock hounding, he’s raising two daughters with his wife, Linda.
Joe Elcano is a retired school principal and educator for 36 years from Reno, Nevada. Joe advocates for the importance of bringing history to life to teach his students. A former graduate from the University Nevada, Reno, he is also an expert in Nevada history and preservation. Currently, he is the lead researcher for our publications. He brings a wealth of knowledge regarding local history and likes to share stories.
Katrina Lasko is a former fine art professor at the University of Nevada, Reno. Katrina has returned to us after living in New Mexico for 25 years. She is a contemporary artist, fine art painter and sculptor. She currently designs layouts for advertisements, publications and catalogs using Adobe InDesign, Illustrator and Photoshop. When she is not in the studio, she likes nature walks and traveling to new places.
Grant Peterson is originally from South Lake Tahoe, California. He has an undergraduate degree from the University of California, Davis in Nature & Culture. He is also a graduate from the University of Nevada, Reno with a master’s degree in English. His previous experience includes teaching writing at the university level in Reno, Lake Tahoe, and Colorado. Grant works as a researcher, describer, and editor for our catalogs and publications. He currently lives in Boulder, Colorado, and acts as an agent for the company, taking in and cataloging new consignments.
Pepper is our office manager and master herder. She makes sure that all our work is done in an appropriate and timely manner and is key to keeping Uwe focused on his tasks.