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WJA Hosts Conference, Awards Ceremony on March 5

Feb 11, 2014 9:54 AM   By WJA
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Press Release: The Women's Jewelry Association (WJA) announces that tickets are on sale for its 11th annual ''In The Know'' conference, to be held on March 5 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the spectacular Hearst Tower in New York City. New this year, the conference will be followed by a special ''In The Spotlight'' awards ceremony, which includes cocktails and dinner, also at the Hearst Tower, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. The second event will honor WJA regional chapters' Shining Stars for 2014, as well as the 2013-14 WJA DIVA design contest award winners.

This year's In The Know conference, which includes lunch, will focus on WJA'S 2014 theme, "Connect and Transform." Program speakers include entertaining speakers who have been featured on TED talks, recognized by magazines such as Fast Company and Fortune, and worked as professionals within all facets of the jewelry industry.

Opening the conference is Alexandra Wilkis Wilson, the co-founder of Gilt Groupe, who will speak on "The Gilt Groupe Story: How to Get $1.5 Billion in Sales in 3.5 Years." With over 15 years of international experience in luxury goods, retail and finance, with brands such as Bulgari, Louis Vuitton, and Merrill Lynch, Wilson was part of the founding team at Gilt Groupe, an innovative online shopping destination offering its members special access to the world's most coveted branded merchandise and experiences-at insider prices. Wilson also co-authored The New York Times bestselling book, By Invitation Only: How We Built Gilt and Changed the Way Millions Shop, published by Portfolio/Penguin. She will be signing books after her speech.

The conference concludes with another innovator, Rachel Shechtman, the founder of STORY, who will speak on "Storytelling: The New Consumerism." Named one of Fortune's "40 under 40" and one of the "100 Most Creative People in Business" by Fast Company, Shechtman is a retail guru who has consulted for brands such as Kraft, TOMS shoes and Lincoln Motor Co.  STORY is a retail concept that takes the point of view of a magazine, changes like a gallery, and sells things like a store. Every four to eight weeks, STORY, which is based in Manhattan, completely reinvents itself -- from merchandise and store design to floor plan and fixtures -- to bring to light a new theme, trend, or issue.

Also on tap is Dan Thurmon, a motivational, entertaining and energetic speaker, who will present "Off Balance on Purpose: How to Evolve During Changing Times." Thurmon is the author of two books and a recognized expert in helping hundreds of organizations and individuals implement action plans and move confidently through transitions. He will address In The Know attendees on the topic of change and how to best prepare for individual and industry evolution.

There will be two panels at In The Know. The first is moderated by Stellene Volandes, the style director at Town & Country magazine, and will feature designers such as Melissa Joy Manning and Kara Ross, addressing the topic: "Beyond the Basics: How Jewelry & Watch Brands Have Extended Their Brands." The second panel is moderated by Orit, the president and CEO of The O Group, who will discuss "Close to the Consumer: How Retailers are Reinventing Themselves" with panelists: Cathy Fischer of Sterling Jewelers Inc.; PJ Lynch of Gem Shopping Network; Jennifer Gandia of Greenwich Jewelers; Annelise Peterson of Net-A-Porter and Daniella Yacobovsky of BaubleBar.

Combination tickets can be purchased for the In The Know Conference and In The Spotlight, and both events can be purchased separately, too. Click here for more:

About the Women's Jewelry Association
WJA's mission is to help women in the jewelry and watch industries advance and develop professionally through networking, education, leadership development, and the provision of member services. For more information, visit

About In The Know
WJA's signature educational conference, In The Know enlightens jewelry professionals on a variety of topics relevant to the growth of their careers and businesses. Attendees get inspired through a day of insightful seminars from leading experts, and unique networking opportunities.

About In The Spotlight
WJA's newly re-formatted networking event celebrates its chapters' annual Shining Star awardees and annual WJA DIVA award winners. The awards ceremony, which includes cocktails and dinner, is now closely tied to WJA's In The Know conference, conveniently taking place just after the conference-at the same location.

Rapaport News is not responsible for, and does not endorse, the content of any third-party press release. This is not a Rapaport Press Release. It has been provided as additional information for our clients.


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Tags: conference, wja, women in the know
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