Industry Veteran Barry Lustig Joins The Gordon Company as Vice President
Pompano Beach, FL—Barry Lustig, G.G., CG, (left) has joined The Gordon Company as its new vice president. With over 20 years in the diamond and jewelry industry with such notable firms as GIA, Cora Diamond, Lazare Kaplan, and most recently Jade Trau, Lustig has spent the last decade entrenched in jewelry manufacturing and working with upscale retail jewelers across the nation.
“I am thrilled to join The Gordon Company and add my industry experience and commitment to our trade in helping fine retail jewelers thrive in this highly competitive marketplace,” he said. Adds Gordon Co. founder and CEO Jeff Gordon, “We recruited Barry Lustig because we knew his tremendous energy and dedication to helping independent jewelry retailers would be a perfect complement to our team of experts in the field. Lustig will join our president Ira Bergman as a key interface to the industry and our upscale retail clients.”
Duncan Pay Tapped To Head GIA Education
Carlsbad, CA—Duncan Pay has been named vice president and chief academic officer of GIA (Gemological Institute of America). Previously senior director of gemology content strategy, Pay will now oversee GIA’s global education courses in gemology and jewelry design and manufacturing and will remain editor-in-chief of Gems & Gemology (G&G), GIA’s quarterly professional peer-reviewed journal, a position he has held since 2013.
Pay assumes role of vice president and chief academic officer immediately. During his 20-year career at GIA, he led conversion of coursework to eLearning and strengthened GIA’s gemology courses by enabling timely sharing of findings from the Institute’s research and lab teams. As editor-in-chief of G&G, he oversaw a renaissance of the 84-year-old journal, expanding the range of research-based articles and building print and online readership.
Bev Hori, GIA senior vice president and chief learning officer, previously announced plans to retire in May 2018. During the transition, Hori will have responsibility for galvanizing the digital transformation of the Richard T. Liddicoat Library and Information Center, and GIA’s engagement with the Institute’s global network of 120,000 active alumni.
“I am immensely pleased that Duncan has taken on this very important role to carry on Bev’s incredible work to establish professional standards and strive for continuous improvement through education for the gem and jewelry industry,” said Susan Jacques, GIA president and CEO. “Throughout her career, Bev demonstrated a passion for bringing people together to find ways to collaborate, not only for their benefit but also for the benefit of the industry. Her many contributions serve as a model for others to emulate.” Jacques continued, “I have the utmost confidence that Duncan will further enhance GIA’s education offerings.”
“I look forward to the duties of my new role and to cultivating ways to expand our mission even further,” said Pay. “Bev has been a wonderful mentor; her sense of mission, clear communication of GIA’s core values and positive forward thinking are a model for us all.”
Prior to joining GIA in 1998, Pay had more than 13 years’ experience in the jewelry industry including jewelry and gemological instrument retail sales, jewelry manufacturing, and colored stone buying and wholesaling. He was previously course development manager for the Asian Institute of Gemological Sciences in Bangkok, Thailand. Pay holds a Bachelor of Science degree in geology from the University of Wales, Great Britain; and a Graduate Gemologist diploma (GG) from GIA. He is also a Fellow of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain (FGA), and received the association’s Tully Medal as the best student of 1987.
Jewelers for Children Announces Annual Rings of Strength Tour
New York, NY—Jewelers For Children’s annual Rings of Strength fundraiser will be held on Thursday, May 31, at Mandalay Bay Resort Casino in Las Vegas, NV. The very popular event, now in its sixth year, has generated nearly $300,000 to help children in need. It includes a variety of participant options for varying fitness levels: a 5K walk or run, a challenging bike ride in the scenic foothills of Red Rock Valley, or a less strenuous street level bike ride. Sponsors are lining up for this year’s event and participants can now register to participate. The event will kick off at 5:30 a.m. to avoid the heat of the day. Rest stops along the route will ensure that everyone stays hydrated and energized to help raise funds for children in need.
Once again, JCK Events is the major event sponsor; Ashi Diamonds, Freeman, and CMAC have also signed on as sponsors. Participants can visit www.ringsofstrength.org to sign up—either as individuals or as part of a team—and create their own unique fundraising page and URL to forward to encourage their friends and acquaintances to sponsor their participation. All funds raised will benefit the Jewelers for Children charity partners.
The event was named for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital patients Maggie and Odie. When Maggie spoke at the Facets of Hope event in 2012, she shared the story of how she gave Odie a ring with the word Strength engraved in it as they fought their shared battle with cancer. Each participant receives a silver ring like Maggie’s to commemorate their participation in the event, courtesy of Ashi Diamonds.
Since its inception, JFC has donated more than $53 million to programs benefiting children whose lives have been affected by illness, abuse, or neglect through charity partners St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, Make-A-Wish America, and the National CASA Association. JFC also provides support to Make-A-Wish International, and the Santa-America Fund.
Anthony Capuano Retires As President of Jewelers Board of Trade
Warwick, RI—Anthony J. Capuano has retired as president of the Jewelers Board of Trade after 17 years of service to JBT. Capuano began as a JBT board director in 2000 and has more than 25 years of dedicated service to the diamond and jewelry industry. Additionally, he has been involved in the industry via memberships in the International Precious Metals Institute, Providence Jewelers Club, and Boston Jewelers Club.
"We would like to thank Tony for his service to The Jewelers Board of Trade, and the jewelry industry. Tony charted a legacy for the organization that will benefit JBT for many years to come. We wish him well in the future," says Todd Wolleman, JBT chairman, adding that Richard Weisenfeld will continue in his role as acting president.
Regional Jewelry Chain Sues Zales Over Google Search
Twin Falls, ID—Jensen Jewelers, a 14-store jewelry chain with stores in Idaho, Wyoming, Montana, and Nevada, has filed suit against Zales, part of the Signet group, for allegedly misappropriating the jeweler’s name in online search engines before Black Friday 2016.
According to an article in the Idaho Statesman, the complaint alleges a Google search under “Jensen Jewelers” brought up a paid ad for Zales at the top of the page that read “Jensen Jewelers — Black Friday 35% Off Storewide — zales.com.” Customers who clicked on the ad were redirected to Zales’ website, not Jensen’s.
Image: U.S. District Court via Idaho Statesman.
David Bouffard, vice president of corporate affairs for Signet, told the paper it’s company policy not to comment on legal matters. He also refused comment in a JCK article about the case.
IDCA Honors Temple St. Clair At 34th Annual Awards Night in Tucson
Tucson, AZ—The Indian Diamond & Colorstone Association hosted its 34th Annual Tucson Awards Gala on February 1. Temple St. Clair was presented with the organization’s "Designer of the Year” Award. She told the audience that her travels across India 30 years ago was the starting point of her design journey as she was she inspired by the art, architecture, and antiques she saw there.
Benjamin Guttery of Third Coast Gems was keynote speaker. He shared how passion for his work was the ruling force in his life and that India is a culture that adores jewelry. “Every piece, every stone has a story to be told, and Instagram is the platform,” he said.
Above from left: Shekhar Shah, IDCA jt. secretary; Temple St. Clair; Shailesh Jhalani, IDCA vice president; Haridas Kotahwala, IDCA director. Below from left: Benjamin Guttery; Shiksha Naheta, IDCA director, and Shah.
Israel Diamond Exchange Launches Official Partnership with Alibaba.com
Ramat Gan, Israel—The Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) has officially launched a partnership with Alibaba.com, making it the first diamond bourse to offer polished diamonds and diamond jewelry on the platform, directly from the source. Alibaba.com is the leading platform for global wholesale trade, serving millions of buyers and suppliers around the world. The launch was announced during the International Diamond Week in Israel this week.
Through this partnership, up to 150 IDE members will be able to establish virtual diamond and jewelry stores on the site, under the auspices of the Israeli diamond industry’s official body. With the IDE endorsement, buyers are guaranteed that the supplier offers only natural, conflict-free diamonds and upholds the highest professional standards of quality and reliability.
All IDE [online] stores carry a special symbol indicating that they are “Authorized Members” of the Israel Diamond Exchange. Although the project is just now being officially launched, 80 IDE authorized stories are already in operation.