WJA awards $16,500 in member grants

The Women’s Jewelry Association Member Grant Program has awarded $16,500 to 33 of its members. The intention of the WJA Member Grants is to provide a financial contribution for ongoing education that will empower women in the jewelry, watch, and related industries.  These grants are available to all female WJA members and are up to $500 in value.

Funds for the annual grants are raised by WJA in a number of ways.  A significant portion was raised during WJA’s annual Awards for Excellence celebration in July 2005, as well as from the generous contributions of companies and individuals who support WJA’s mission. Five WJA chapters around the country (Northern California, Los Angeles, San Diego, Midwest, and New England) also contributed funds as a result of their own fundraising efforts.

“WJA recognizes the importance of continuing education for the empowerment of women.” said Gillian Schultz, chair of the member grant program.  “This program has become a highly valued member benefit as is seen by the increase in applications from members across the country.  The program is an important aspect of WJA’s mission to help women achieve their fullest potential in our industry,” 

Names of 2005 WJA Grant recipients are listed below or can be see on the WJA website at  www.womensjewelry.org.

WJA also provides scholarships to female students enrolled in jewelry and watch design programs in the United States.

For more information on member grants and student scholarships, contact Gillian Schultz, WJA Scholarship Director, Metronet Safe & Sound, 67 E. Madison Street, #265, Chicago, IL 60603.

The following is a list of the WJA Grant recipients along with their company and GIA chapter affiliation. 

National Grants 2005:  
Gina D’Onofrio, GinaJewels, Los Angeles
Michelle Batty , Michelle Nogan Batty Designs, Metro
Molly Clarke, Brooklyn, Metro
Pam  Levine, Levine Design Group, Metro
Maressa Tosto Merwarth, Mari Tome, Metro
Merrill Essex, Essex Antiques & Collectibles, Midwest
Laura Haas, Haas & Co., Midwest
Carol Skarlat, Skarlat Passion,  Midwest
Marilyn Sevon , Sevon Designs, LLC, New England
Lydia Wilson, Marlowe & Company Jewellers, N. California
Sasha Prawalsky, OZ! Gallery of Fine Jewelry, N. California
Tarah Nicole Prater, Tarah Prater Designs, Pacific NW
Judy Colbert, GIA, San Diego
Kate Donovan, The Collector Fine Jewelry, San Diego
Alexandra Hart, Alexandra Hart, Metals Artist, San Diego
Linda Jalving, Jewels by the Sea, San Diego
Matilda Parente, Libertine, San Diego
Vickie Lynn Riggs, Vickie Riggs Design, San Diego
Jayne Schultz, JayStone, San Diego
LeeAnna Baldwin, Southwest
Gina Dill, Kinne’s Jewelers, Southwest
Sheryl Roncketto, Roberson’s Jewelers, Southwest
Nancy Vega, Sand & Stone Fine Jewelers LLC, Southwest
Los Angeles Chapter Grants 2005:   
Sandra Muller  Lila Gems Inc,  Los Angeles
   
Northern California Chapter Grants 2005:   
Diane Kim Fox, N. California
Beata Majewska, N. California
     
Midwest Chapter Grants 2005:    
Susan Klemt, Midwest
Mechel Premo, CD Peacock Jewelers, Midwest
    
New England Chapter Grants 2005:   
Julia Behrends , Julia Behrends Design, New England
Susan Flynn, Leach & Garner/General Findings, New England
Maria Madjoucoff, New England
     
San Diego Chapter Grants 2005:   
Lisa Slovis Mandel, Lisa Slovis Metalsmithing, San Diego
Peggy Tsiamis, GIA, San Diego