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SJTA Announces 2022 Board of Directors

The board of directors provides strategic direction for the continued growth of the Atlanta Jewelry Show.




(PRESS RELEASE) ATLANTA, GA — Southern Jewelry Travelers Association (SJTA), producer of the Atlanta Jewelry Show, announces its 2022 Board of Directors. Annual elections were held on November 19, 2021. The Board of Directors provides strategic direction for the continued growth of the Atlanta Jewelry Show and support of SJTA’s mission: engaging and fostering a collaborative community, promoting trade and long-term success, optimizing Return-On-Investment, education, and inspiring its stakeholders to embrace and thrive in the ever-changing business environment with integrity, kindness, and unmatched hospitality.

The 2022 Executive Board is comprised of: President: Steve Binder, (Lafonn); Executive Vice President: Rhett Hartzog; Vice President: Tom Schlotman, (Victor Corporation); Secretary-Treasurer: Joseph Tsui, (Empire Corporation).

President Steve Binder says, “I am personally delighted to welcome such a strong group of board members, and I look forward to serving with each of them in the coming year. I’m also very pleased that this team will lead the next chapter of our work, as they have individually demonstrated exceptional commitment to advancing SJTA’s mission, and we’re looking forward their leadership.”

The 2022 Directors include: Elesa Dillon, (Southern Jewelry & Mid-America Jewelry News); Lou Mazza, (Raymond Mazza), and Allison Peck, (Brevani / Color Merchants). New 2022 Advisors have been appointed: Jamie Schaller, (Bulova); and Ross Wesdorp, (Jewel-Craft) and will serve a one-year term.

Introduced in 2022, SJTA established the position of Show Ambassador. These appointed members are charged with representing SJTA in a positive light and helping increase community awareness and engagement. As volunteer members, appointees embody the SJTA identity, promote the Atlanta Jewelry Show, and serve as liaison between SJTA stakeholders and the association. The following 2022 Ambassadors will serve a one-year term: Lead Ambassador, Rajesh Lalwani, (Roma Designs); Allan Cagle, (Soprafino & Brilliant Elements); and Suresh (Sam) Mulani, (Reko Settings).

“We are extremely grateful to work with this impressive list of volunteer board members,” said SJTA Executive Director Libby Brown. “Each one of them provides our team with a unique background and perspective and we look forward to their expertise and guidance this year,” A heartfelt thank you to all past board members and to our returning officers and directors,” Brown continued.


The first event of 2022 is the SoHo Experience by AJS, an in-person event scheduled for March 4-6. Attendees are strongly encouraged to pre-register here.



He Doubled His Sales Goals with Wilkerson

John Matthews, owner of John Michael Matthews Fine Jewelry in Vero Beach, Florida, is a planner. As an IJO member jeweler, he knew he needed an exit strategy if he ever wanted to g the kind of retirement he deserved. He asked around and the answers all seemed to point to one solution: Wilkerson. He talked to Rick Hayes, Wilkerson president, and took his time before making a final decision. He’d heard Wilkerson knew their way around a going out of business sale. But, he says, “he didn’t realize how good it was going to be.” Sales goals were “ambitious,” but even Matthews was pleasantly surprised. “It looks like we’re going to double that.”

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