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In the End

Last Laugh: Joe Donlon



This month’s joke-teller has come a long way since his first job as a part-time jewelry store stock-boy.



In 1970, when Joe Donlon was 16, a family friend called and offered him a part-time stock-boy gig in a jewelry store. “They would pay me $1.25 per hour and I would get paid every Friday,” Donlon recalls. “I needed an 8-track stereo for my $200 used car, so I said “You betcha.” But, as these stories go, that was only the beginning of a long career in jewelry.

Donlon earned his diamond grading certificate from GIA and became interested in watch repair, learning the craft from the store’s watchmaker. When the store closed in 1983, he was immediately recruited by a high-end jeweler at the local mall, where he obtained his GIA colored-stone certificate and created and managed the watch department. Finally, in 2001, he started his own business, Donlon’s Quality Time watch repair shop in his home in Ventura, CA. He does work for 12 retail stores and his business is growing. “The only thing I hate is the commute from upstairs to downstairs,” Donlon says.


[span class=note]This story is from the January 2010 edition of INSTORE[/span]

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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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