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Signet Jewelers appointed James Grant as vice president, investor relations and promoted Christina Janice, formerly director, RESOLVE and human resources compliance services, to the newly created position of vice president of human resources compliance and associate general counsel. Grant was most recently the director of investor relations for Collective Brands Inc., the holding company of Payless, Stride Rite and Sperry.

• The board of the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) announced that James Courage will succeed Matt Runci as RJC chairman. Courage, the CEO of Platinum Guild International (PGI), will assume the role of chairman-elect following Runci’s retirement at the end of the year. He will be formally confirmed as chairman by the full RJC membership at its annual general meeting in May 2013.

The RJC also announced that it reached the 400-member mark throughout the jewelry supply chain. The organization noted that it is translating the RJC Code of Practices and supporting documents into French, Italian, Spanish, Gujarati, simplified Chinese and Portuguese.

The RJC certified another seven companies for having met the ethical, human rights, social and environmental standards established by the RJC’s Member Certification system. The companies are Kapu Gems, a diamond manufacturer in Mumbai; Salanitro SA and Serti-Concept SA, Sertis Creations SA, a jewelry and watch manufacturer based in Geneva; Barsamian Diamonds NV, an Antwerp-based diamond wholesaler and the following Antwerp-based diamond traders: Malay Gems Bvba, Dediam Bvba, Szwarcburt Diamond Trading Co. Bvba (SDTC) and Weinberg Bernard Bvba.

Moti Ganz was unanimously re-elected as chairman of the Israel Diamond Institute (IDI) Group of Companies by its board of directors. Ganz, the owner of Motiganz Diamond Group, was recently president of the International Diamond Manufacturers Association (IDMA) and serves as honorary president of Israel Diamond Manufacturers Association (IsDMA).

Jewelers for Children (JFC) announced the appointment of new directors to serve a three-year term on its board. They include: Scott Berger, Pandora North America; David Bonaparte, Jewelers of America (JA); Alan Chinich, Movado Group; David Cochran, Manufacturing Jewelers and Suppliers of America; Jeffrey Corey, Day’s Jewelers; Vicki Cunningham, Cunningham Fine Jewelers; Jerry Ehrenwald, International Gemological Institute (IGI); Eddie Le Vian, Le Vian; Scott McQuaid, In House Jewelers and Yancy Weinrich, JCK Events/Reed Expositions.

Rahaminov Diamonds appointed Charles Velasquez as the company’s global sales associate. Velasquez previously held executive management positions at both Van Cleef & Arpels and Bulgari in New York.

Diavik Diamond Mines Inc. was selected for the second consecutive year as one of Canada’s “Top 100 Employers.” More than 15,000 companies were invited to apply and participants were evaluated across a number of criteria including the physical workplace, employee benefits, employee communications, training and development, performance management and community involvement.

Maurice Tempelsman, chairman of Lazare Kaplan International Inc. (LKI), received the Africa-America Institute (AAI) Distinguished Trustee Award. He was honored for his five decades of support to AAI and service as a former member and chair of the AAI Board of Trustees.

AAI is dedicated to advancing education and professional training for Africans and promoting engagement between Africa and America through education, training and dialogue.

The only two women presidents in Africa were also honored at the AAI’s 28th annual awards dinner. Her Excellency President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of the Republic of Liberia accepted the AAI African National Achievement Award for Literacy to Support Life Skills and Her Excellency President Joyce Banda of the Republic of Malawi received the AAI Award for Championing Women’s Rights and Business Leadership.

Birks awarded its Birks Canadian Diamond accolade to Canada’s only 2012 Olympic gold medalist, trampoline athlete Rosannagh MacLennan. The Birks Canadian Diamond was created this year to recognize talent from across Canada and awarded for the first time earlier this year during the Cannes film festival. MacLennan is the third recipient of the Birks Canadian Diamond following Canadian film actresses Sarah Gadon and Emily Hampshire.

The New York State Jewelers Association raised $5,000 for the Jewelers for Veterans Foundation at its recent Willow Ridge golf outing. The foundation seeks to assist veterans through job counseling, one-on-one support, providing knowledge about careers in the jewelry industry and assisting with employment opportunities. Ralph Destino, chairman emeritus of Cartier, is chair of the foundation. Event sponsors included Baume & Mercier, Circa, Forevermark, JCK Events, Jewelers Mutual, Kay Cameron, Manhattan Gold & Silver, Martin Flyer, Mikimoto and Raymond Weil. For more information on Jewelers for Veterans Foundation, go to www.jewelersforveterans.org.

Trent West, the owner of nine patents related to the concept and manufacture of Tungsten Carbide rings in the U.S., has come to a settlement agreement with Stuller Inc. and Quality Gold. According to West’s statement, as part of the agreement, Stuller obtained a license to sell Tungsten Carbide rings to its customer base of independent retailers throughout the U.S. Quality Gold of Fairfield, Ohio, has agreed to exit this business and will not sell Tungsten Carbide rings after March 7, 2013.

The U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) upheld all of Charles & Colvard’s claims under its moissanite patent, number 5,723,391, covering the silicon carbide gemstones upon conclusion of an ex parte reexamination request by BetterThanDiamond.com. The reconfirmation followed a similar test by the Australian Patent Office earlier in May that concluded Charles & Colvard’s Australian patent is both novel and inventive when faced with a similar ex parte reexamination.

The National Association of Jewelry Appraisers (NAJA) announced the creation of a scholarship fund in honor of Howard Rubin, NAJA’s national secretary, who passed away earlier this year. The Howard Rubin Educational Foundation was formed to advance education relating to gem and jewelry personal property appraising and to assist NAJA members through scholarships for educational development to improve their capabilities by attending courses, classes, workshops and conferences.

The Foundation will initially present general scholarship awards of $500 each to one new (less than two years experience) and one experienced member. Applications can be obtained on the NAJA website, najaappraisers.com/ScholarshipApp2012.pdf. Deadline for submission is June 30, 2013 and the final selection by the NAJA Scholarship Advisory Board will be announced on July 30th, 2013.

The Diamond Council of America (DCA) created a new membership category, DCA Individual Member. DCA noted that the individual membership is in response to requests from consumers and industry professionals who want access to DCA’s accredited courses that were previously only available to employees of DCA executive or associate member companies. Dues for DCA individual members are $35 annually. Applications are available online at www.diamondcouncil.org.

International Diamond Manufacturers Association (IDMA) launched its new Facebook page. IDMA’s communications director, Ya’akov Almor, noted that the page would be used to update the global diamond business community and trade media, as much as possible in real time.
The IDMA page is at: facebook.com/InternationalDiamondManufacturersAssociation.

The Diamond Development Initiative International (DDI International) launched its annual industry fundraising campaign with initial contributions from the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) and the International Diamond Manufacturers Association (IDMA). DDI was started five years ago as a way of bringing industry, governments and civil society together to tackle the problem of Africa’s 1.5 million artisanal diamond diggers and to ensure fair prices and safe working conditions, provide education and protect human rights.

Isak Trau, the former head of diamond manufacturer Trau Bros., passed away. Building on his father Chaim Trau’s signature Rose Cut, Isak and his brother Charles built the company’s reputation in the 1930s, specializing in cutting fancy-shape diamonds, particularly ovals and marquise. 

Article from the Rapaport Magazine - November 2012. To subscribe click here.

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