Connect with us

Press Releases

GIA Commits $1.3M to Artisanal Mining Education Project

It’s a four-year commitment.

mm

Published

on

Pact representative Norbert Massay, GIA Graduate Gemologist (GG) Marvin Wambua and GIA’s library director Robert Weldon explaining the gem guide to artisanal miners in MoroGoro, Tanzania.

(PRESS RELEASE) CARLSBAD, CA – Building on a successful pilot and feedback from small-scale colored gemstone miners in Tanzania, GIA (Gemological Institute of America) will expand distribution of its innovative gem guide for artisanal miners to other communities and countries in Africa. Speaking at the ICA Congress in Bangkok on Oct. 15, GIA President and CEO Susan Jacques announced a four-year, $1.3 million commitment, funded from the GIA endowment, to expand the program in Tanzania to Madagascar, Nigeria, Rwanda and Zambia. Working withPact, a Washington D.C.-based international development nonprofit organization with expertise in the region, GIA plans to reach 10,000 miners with relevant information on how to evaluate the quality of the rough they mine.

“This is a tremendous step forward in our efforts to bring information directly to artisanal miners right at the beginning of the gem and jewelry supply chain,” said Jacques. “We know that this investment will bring an invaluable benefit to miners, their families and the communities in which they live.”

Robert Weldon, GIA director of the Richard T. Liddicoat Library and Information Center, pictured with an artisanal miner from Tunduru, Tanzania.

The gem guide project began shortly after GIA Distinguished Research Fellow Dr. James Shigley saw the difficult working conditions of artisanal miners during a 2008 trip to Kenya and Tanzania. Dr. Shigley and Dona Dirlam, then-director of the GIA library, working with GIA research and library staff, created the booklet, “Selecting Gem Rough: A Guide for Artisanal Miners.” First developed in English and later translated into Swahili, the photo-rich booklet has images of the gemstones found in East Africa and illustrations of how to examine and evaluate rough gems. The booklet is waterproof and comes with a durable plastic tray that can be used to sort gems and do basic gemological evaluations. GIA piloted the program in 2016, working with Pact.

“We found that for every dollar invested, there was a 12-fold social return that will last years into the future,” said Cristina M. Villegas, technical program manager for Pact’s Mines to Markets program. “With their new knowledge, miners improve their income, send their children to school, invest in their mines and their communities.”

GIA staff, including Robert Weldon, current director of the Richard T. Liddicoat Gemological Library and Information Center at GIA and a major contributor to the development and content of the guide, trained more than 1,000 artisanal miners on how to use the guide and tray during a two-week period earlier this year in Tanzania. GIA’s initial efforts to provide information to small scale, artisanal miners came full circle when the GIA team visited the Tanzanian Association of Women Miners (TAWOMA), who participated in the very first training session for the guide.

Advertisement

“There is nothing more rewarding than seeing the reaction of the miners as they learn the material – you instantly see that you’ve positively made a change in someone’s life,” said Weldon. “These transcendent moments make us so proud that we can provide artisanal miners with a gem guide that gives them the confidence to know their value in the market.”

Advertisement

SPONSORED VIDEO

Wilkerson Testimonials

Having a Moving Sale? Let Wilkerson Do the Heavy Lifting

For Jim Woodard, owner of Woodard’s Diamonds & Design in Tullahoma, Tenn., when it was time for a moving sale, there was only one company to help with the event: Wilkerson. “They brought in the right team for us,” he says, remarking about the sale’s extraordinary results, including a nearly 500% monthly sales increase compared to the previous year. “I wanted to have the best in the industry. And that’s the main reason why I contacted Wilkerson.”

Promoted Headlines

Press Releases

GN Diamond Appeals to Millennials with an In Store Cool Factor of Virtual Reality

They can actually view a diamond on its journey from the mine where it was unearthed to the store.

mm

Published

on

(PRESS RELEASE) Virtual Reality is particularly geared toward millennials as they can actually view a diamond on its journey from the mine where it was unearthed to the store. It’s a unique and inspiring experience for clients to feel a more personal connection to the diamond they will purchase. Couples appreciate a diamond when they know its story, and they get a better understanding of what makes two diamonds different – along with their prices – even though they may seem identical.

GN says the Light Performance Technology, paired with virtual reality immersion, turns shopping into a sensational experience.

Asaf Herskovitz, CEO, of GN Diamond believes that, “By creating a unique shopping experience for millennials, baby boomers and customers of all ages, retail stores create a point of distinction for themselves especially when competing against on-line internet sites.”

Diamond Hunt

Retailers have another great in-store selling tool with GN’s Diamond Hunt, which allows stores to put GN’s loose diamond inventory of more than $70 million on their own website, including the store’s logo and markup. Videos of the diamonds, the Light Performance score and the certification of the diamonds are included.

“Everyone craves a pleasant, lifetime memory when making major purchases. Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality fulfills this goal and expectation.,” Mr. Herskovitz adds.

Continue Reading

Press Releases

Phillip Gavriel Kicks Off Holiday Season By Giving Back to Community

It donated $25,000 worth of jewelry.

mm

Published

on

(PRESS RELEASE) NEW YORK – Phillip Gavriel participated in the New York City based Housing Works’ annual benefit, Fashion for Action. The company donated $25,000 worth of jewelry.

Jewelers have a long tradition of supporting charitable organizations, and both Royal Chain and Phillip Gavriel have a history of giving back, both directly and through partnerships with retailers over the years. This year, Phillip Gavriel contributed to his own local community in New York City with a $25,000 donation of jewelry. Housing Works is a pillar of New York City’s philanthropy efforts, and since it was founded in 1990 it fights for funding and legislation to ensure that all people living with HIV/AIDS have access to quality housing, healthcare, HIV prevention, and treatment, among other lifesaving services.

Every fall, Housing Works hosts the Fashion for Action event and invites various designers to give back in a charitable shopping experience. Event guests have the opportunity to shop donated apparel and jewelry from hundreds of brands while sipping champagne and mingling with New York’s most stylish individuals. Last night was no exception, Phillip Gavriel Jewelry was in the company of fashion’s most important brands such as Christian Dior, Dolce & Gabbana, and COACH to name a few. The roster of New York’s celebrity guest appearances included actress Patricia Clarkson, 2019 Emmy winner Billy Porter and Sex and the City stylist Patricia Field.

This year’s Fashion for Action is currently taking place November 14th-16th, 2019. The Opening Reception took place last night and Phillip Gabriel Maroof himself attended to not only display some his pieces but to shop other brands for a good cause. The public sale will be held, November 15th and 16th from 10 a.m.-7 p.m. at the original Chelsea Thrift Shop. The designer pieces will continue to be sold through the season while they last.

Continue Reading

Press Releases

New Governors Add Expertise to GIA Board

They will help steer the Institute’s mission and strategic initiatives.

mm

Published

on

(PRESS RELEASE) CARLSBAD, CA – GIA (Gemological Institute of America) welcomed two new members to the Institute’s Board of Governors at its regularly scheduled meeting in Carlsbad, CA. The new Governors, Dr. Jeffrey E. Post, research geologist at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, and Tammy Storino, a finance and operations executive with experience in global consumer brands, will – with 15 other GIA Governors – help steer the Institute’s mission and strategic initiatives. The board bid farewell to Governor Thomas T. Yang, managing director and partner at PrimeGenesis, who completed his term with nine years of service.

“It is an honor and a privilege to have these two dynamic leaders join the GIA Board of Governors. Their expertise will be an invaluable asset to GIA’s consumer protection mission, helping to ensure that the Institute remains a leader in research and innovation while delivering excellence in education and laboratory services,” said Susan Jacques, GIA president and CEO.

Post is the curator-in-charge for the National Gem and Mineral Collection at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. In addition, during his more than 35 years at the Smithsonian, he served as chairman of the department of mineral sciences and lead curator for the renovation of the geology, gems and minerals exhibit. Before joining the Smithsonian, he was a postdoctoral research fellow in the department of geological sciences at Harvard University. Post’s many accolades include the Carnegie Mineralogical Award, Jewelers of America Lifetime Achievement Award and Mineralogical Society of America Public Service Medal.

Storino has extensive experience as a global operations and finance leader focused on growth and business results in global consumer brands. Her career spans more than 25 years with companies such as Walt Disney in California and Hong Kong, St. John Knits International Inc. and Too Faced Cosmetics. Storino is a Certified Public Accountant and received her Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from Northern Illinois University.

The week before the Board meeting, nearly 60 experts – including GIA staff (more than 20 with doctoral degrees); GIA Governors Barbara Dutrow, Jeffrey Post and John Valley, who are all recognized for their academic research; and specialized outside experts – gathered at the Institute’s headquarters in Carlsbad, California, for the 13th annual research meeting. During the three-day meeting, researchers reviewed the latest discoveries in diamonds, colored stones, pearls, laboratory-grown diamonds and instruments. Topics included advances in diamond, colored stone and pearl identification; the scientific matching that supports GIA’s new Diamond Origin Report service; detection of advanced treatments and other aspects of GIA’s extensive research program.

Continue Reading

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Subscribe


BULLETINS

INSTORE helps you become a better jeweler
with the biggest daily news headlines and useful tips.
(Mailed 5x per week.)

Latest Comments

Most Popular