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America's Coolest Stores

ACS 2003: The Judges



The Judges

Penny Palmer

Penny Palmer is director of member services with the Independent Jewelers’ Organization (IJO). The IJO is a major buying group and service organization for its retail members. Penny brings new members into the organization, and helps existing members take advantage of the many services IJO offers to help increase their profits. (

Fred Michmerschuizen

Fred Michmerschuizen is director of marketing and communications for Jewelers of America (JA). As well as helping consumers make informed jewelry choices, JA helps members improve their business skills and profitability. (

Roxanna A. Sway

Roxanna A. Sway is editor of  the award-winning Display & Design Ideas magazine. DDI was recognized for its award-winning coverage of the retail industry and retail design with five editorial awards last year. Sway is a professional member of the Institute of Store Planners (ISP), a multiple Store of the Year award winner, and an expert on retail design.


Brett Weiler

Brett Weiler is the owner of last year’s “Coolest Store in America,” Decatur City Jewelers. Brett’s a master craftsman who admits he found it a challenge to judge others’ stores based on the Cool Store website: “Next time,” he says, “you’ll have to send me to all of them.”

Deborah Yonick

Deborah Yonick is a seasoned writer on jewelry, and writes a column for the Jewelry Consumer Opinion Council as “The Jewelry Lady”. Check out her latest column at

This story is from the August 2003 edition of INSTORE


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Wilkerson Testimonials

Downsizing? Wilkerson Is Here to Help

Orin Mazzoni, Jr., the owner of Orin Jewelers in Garden City and Northville, Michigan, decided it was time to downsize. With two locations and an eye on the future, Mazzoni asked Wilkerson to take the lead on closing the Garden City store. Mazzoni met Wilkerson’s Rick Hayes some years back, he says, and once he made up his mind to consolidate, he and Hayes “set up a timeline” for the sale. Despite the pandemic, Mazzoni says the everything went smoothly. “Many days, we had lines of people waiting to get in,” he says, adding that Wilkerson’s professionalism made it all worthwhile. “Whenever you do an event like this, you think, ‘I’ve been doing this my whole life. Do I really need to pay someone to do it for me?’ But then I realized, these guys are the pros and we need to move forward with them.”

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