Skip to main content Navigation

Articles and News

Industry News: Jim Rosenheim To Be Honored By JA; GIA Goes To Harvard; More July 13, 2016 (0 comments)


Tiny Jewel Box’s Jim Rosenheim Named 2017 Gem Awards’ Lifetime Achievement Honoree

New York, NY—Jewelers of America (JA) and the GEM Awards Committee have announced they will honor Jim Rosenheim (left), chairman of Washington, DC-based Tiny Jewel Box with the GEM Award for Lifetime Achievement. The presentation will take place at the 15th annual GEM Awards, Friday, January 13, 2017, at Cipriani 42nd Street in New York City.

The GEM Awards gala honors the outstanding achievements of individuals or companies whose work raises the visibility and status of fine jewelry and watches. The GEM Award for Lifetime Achievement is granted to an individual who has accumulated a career’s worth of contributions to the fine jewelry and watch industry. Honorees set a standard of excellence that serves as an inspiration to industry colleagues.

Rosenheim grew Tiny Jewel Box, a three-generation jewelry business, into an iconic Washington institution and internationally renowned jewelry store. He began working in the store at age 12, and by age 18 was a successful lapidary and bench jeweler. His vision to transition Tiny Jewel Box from a small dealer of primarily antique jewelry to a fashion-forward store with the best jewelry at a wide range of price points was realized as the business outgrew its name and took over one of the toniest retail corners in Washington, DC, near Dupont Circle. Rosenheim also is credited with discovering or accelerating the careers of some of the nation’s top designers, including David Yurman and Alex Sepkus, and was one of the first jewelers to bring bold, Italian jewelry to the forefront in the United States.

Above: Tiny Jewel Box occupies one of the most prestigious retail corners in Washington, DC. Below, the ribbon cutting for the store's expansion last fall.

Rosenheim holds a BS from Syracuse University, an MBA from the American University, attended Georgetown Law Center, and holds a Graduate Gemologist degree from the Gemological Institute of America.

“Jim Rosenheim is one of the most respected individuals in the jewelry industry. He is passionate, kind and a dear friend to many. The success of Tiny Jewel Box is only one aspect of his achievements. His lifetime of nurturing talent and giving back to the jewelry industry are a large part of why the GEM Committee will honor him with a Lifetime Achievement Award,” says Norman Miller, chair of GEM Awards. 

In addition to the GEM Award for Lifetime Achievement, JA will reveal winners of several other GEM Awards categories live during the ceremony. The other nominees will be announced soon.

For details on GEM Awards, to purchase tickets, or to show your support for Jim Rosenheim through sponsorships and the GEM Awards Journal, visit


GIA’s Global Leadership Program at Harvard Business School Focuses On Disruptive Innovation 

Carlsbad, CA—For the third consecutive year, GIA's Global Leadership Program at Harvard Business School (HBS) in Cambridge, MA brought together senior leaders from the gem and jewelry industry for a custom four-day curriculum based on the renowned HBS case study method. The program took place from June 20-23 with 45 top executives from 14 countries and 15 industry sectors including retail, manufacturing, mining and cutting, and the 2016 theme “Disruptive Innovation” honed in on innovation in a rapidly evolving world. 

“This extraordinary educational program creates a unique platform for thought-leaders in the gem and jewelry industry to exchange ideas, examine opportunities and debate solutions for the challenges that lie ahead,” said Susan Jacques, president and CEO of GIA. 

Among the case studies covered during this year’s program were the evolution of the Dove brand of personal care products, how Uber has changed the way the world moves, and Amazon’s innovation in a digital economy.

The program facilitated an environment to “come together with a group of passionate, diverse and intelligent people and engage in some very thought provoking discussions,” said one participant. A week later, “I found myself applying many of the lessons we learned at Harvard to the day-to-day planning of my business. It was certainly one of the most useful, practical and enjoyable opportunities I have ever had in my career,” added another.

GIA, in conjunction with HBS, initiated the program in 2014 to bring together global leaders representing different sectors of the gem and jewelry industry to examine international business issues and apply examples from other industries to their own companies.

GIA will hold its next global leadership program at HBS in June 2017. Participation is limited and by invitation only.


2016 Carelle-WJA Grant Winner Named

New York, NY—The Women's Jewelry Association has awarded its 2016 Carelle-WJA Grant to entrepreneur Melissa Spencer of Los Angeles, CA.

The $5,000 Carelle-WJA grant was created in memory of Brooke Tivol McGrath, a driving force in the launch of luxury brand Carelle. She died suddenly at age 28, due to a rare blood infection. Funded by Carelle as well as through donations to WJA's grant and scholarship funds, the merit based grant is intended to aid in the establishment of a jewelry designer's business. Eligible candidates must be current members of WJA, and in their first five years of business. Applicants are required to submit an essay explaining why they deserve the award, placing an emphasis on personal dedication, determination, and a positive attitude towards the industry.

Spencer’s company, Spencer Fine Jewelry, was established in 2016. The designer earned a B.A. in photography from Southern Methodist University, and also has Graduate Gemologist (G.G.) and Graduate Jeweler (G.J.) diplomas from GIA (Gemological Institute of America.) She is a member of WJA’s Los Angeles chapter, where she serves as event planning co-chair.

Spencer's new company re-invents the art of traditional jewelry portrait miniatures via its trademarked Spencer Portrait gemstone. The designer uses a proprietary process of projecting an image into natural gemstones, including rock crystal quartz, mother of pearl, and diamond. The gems are then set into customizable frames of 18k gold and sterling silver, and decorated with diamonds and colored gemstones. Spencer draws inspiration from the Egyptian, Byzantine, and Victorian eras, when hand-painted portraits in lockets were the fashion for nobility and royalty. Her technique re-imagines these objects for the 21st century, yet retains the intention to depict a beloved person, animal, or art object in an authentic gemstone.

Spencer plans to use her grant money to enhance clients' ability to customize their Spencer Portraits online, a service that will also support the retailers who sell her line. She'll also use the funds to invest in other aspects of her business.

"Winning the Carelle-WJA Grant in memory of Brooke Tivol McGrath is a great honor," says Spencer. "The award will fuel the production of a beautifully interactive website, which is the most important next step of my business so that I may best connect with my customers. I have learned that Brooke and I would have shared many passions, including French language studies, travel, and most importantly, jewelry design. In accepting this award I aspire to honor her legacy."

The Carelle-WJA Grant is administered by the WJA Foundation, a 501(c)3 corporation. Applications were reviewed by a foundation committee that included Chana Regev, owner of Carelle; Cathy Tivol, owner of Tivol Fine Jewelry; WJA Foundation President Lisa Slovis Mandel, owner of Lisa Slovis Metalsmithing; Lisa Schoening, dean of academic development at FIDM (Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising) in Los Angeles; and Lisa Kim, owner of Lisa Kim Fine Jewelry, and the 2013 winner of the Carelle-WJA Grant.

To raise funds for next year's WJA grants and scholarships, WJA is hosting its annual Awards for Excellence gala, on Monday, July 25, 2016, at the Hammerstein Ballroom at the Manhattan Center in New York. Sissy Jones, owner of Sissy's Log Cabin will receive the WJA Lifetime Achievement Award; Peter Engel, president of Fred Meyer Jewelers, will receive the Ben Kaiser Award; and Ben Bridge will receive the Corporate Award.

Share This:

Email Facebook Twitter LinkedIn ShareThis

Leave a Comment:

Human Check

North, South, East and _________.