Glenn R. Nord, former president of the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) and a longtime member of its Board of Governors, was unanimously elected a Governor for Life. GIA President William E. Boyajian announced the election during a reception for the Board at Institute headquarters Nov. 10.
“Glenn Nord has given much of his life to GIA,” said Boyajian, “Glenn’s advice and counsel to both the Board and to me as president has been invaluable, and I am excited about his continuing active involvement in the direction and oversight of the Institute.”
“Serving on the Board of Governors has enabled me to continue to work on behalf of GIA, and I’ve marveled at the progress that has been achieved, especially in recent years, Nord said.
Nord, who has served on GIA’s Board of Governors since 1983, began his career in the jewelry industry as a watchmaker and jeweler and later earned his Graduate Gemologist diploma. While still a student, Nord made such an impression that then-president Richard T. Liddicoat personally selected him to join GIA’s staff in 1961. During that important formative period for the Institute (1961–74), Nord worked closely with Liddicoat. Under Liddicoat’s tutelage, Nord quickly rose to become GIA’s number-two person on the West Coast.
Nord helped spread GIA’s popularity as he traveled cross-country teaching Extension classes and, along the way, visited countless jewelers to emphasize the importance of professional education. In addition, Nord helped take the Institute’s Education programs to the international level with the introduction of one-week classes in Tel Aviv and, soon after, the opening of GIA’s first international affiliate school in Japan.
Nord remained with GIA until 1974, when he left to work with diamantaire Joseph Goldfinger. He returned to GIA in 1983 to serve as president at the request of the Board of Governors after Liddicoat suffered a heart attack. Nord remained as president for three years, guiding GIA through a particularly difficult period for the Institute—as it was for the industry—following the collapse of the diamond market and the ensuing financial downturn. Under Nord’s leadership, the Institute recovered and grew steadily. With his resignation in 1986 for health reasons, Boyajian succeeded him as president.
The recently published book, Legacy of Leadership: A History of the Gemological Institute of America, further describes Nord’s contributions to GIA and the industry.
On Nov. 12, 2001, Nord received GIA’s highest honor, the Richard T. Liddicoat Award for Distinguished Achievement.