Bill Boyajian, the longtime president of the Gemological Institute of America, sent a message to his staff alerting them of his resignation. The letter was sent Monday at the close of the business day. It reads:
After a great deal of thought and following our recent Board of Governors meeting, I have made the very difficult decision to resign as President of GIA, effective July 31. That date marks my 20th year at the helm of the Institute, during which time we have grown enormously as an organization in both size and stature.
As many of you know, I have worked at GIA for over three decades, most of my adult life. I take immense pride in what we’ve accomplished as a truly global team. Moreover, I have enjoyed every day of this journey with some of the finest people I have ever known at my side. However, I now find myself at an interesting crossroad in life, both personally and professionally. My heart is being pulled in a new direction, one that seeks a variety of challenges both emotionally and intellectually. Fortunately, I am able to leave GIA with a host of memories and experiences that I will always treasure.
You have often heard me say that the Institute is more than beautiful buildings with wonderful views: GIA is its people. People like you have built an organization that is strong, resilient, and always moving forward. Each of us contributes to the Institute’s strength, and it is because of this that the Institute transcends each of us. This is the legacy that was created by Robert Shipley and Richard Liddicoat, one that I have always tried to follow, and one that I know you will continue.
I am very blessed to have had your friendship and support over the years, and I trust that you will provide our current and future leadership with the same loyalty, enthusiasm, and spirit you’ve shown me.
It saddens me deeply to leave GIA. But thanks to you, I can leave knowing that GIA and its mission are in good hands.