JVC to begin a five-year fundraising campaign

For the first time in more than a decade, the JVC will solicit funds. The five-year JVC annual campaign was announced during the JVC Annual Luncheon.

JVC performs an important function to both the trade and the jewelry buying public-they protect the industry. It educates and mediates. It performs arbitration and research. It tests karatage. It does hidden shopping. It generates good will in situations where it is often in short supply. The JVC does whatever it needs to do in order to straighten out problems and keep costly public lawsuits out of the legal system. The JVC is the industry’s guardian of ethics and integrity, the JVC said in a statement.

The JVC is a membership-based organization. It collects money to operate from the annual dues-and sometimes the amount falls short. In the past few years, the JVC has come a long way with the industry’s help and support. However, the organization says that due to recent world events, a consolidating industry, and a weaker economy, the JVC’s task-to continue to educate and protect the industry-has now become especially challenging. To counteract these forces, the JVC has established a five-year fundraising campaign.

“The JVC is the original behind-the-scenes organization,” says contributor and new JVC President Hank Siegel (Hamilton Jewelers, New Jersey). “They provide vital services that protect the industry and yet, due to confidentiality concerns, they are rarely given the credit for saving industry members literally thousands of dollars. Many times, the JVC steps in and untangles messy legal situations, avoiding the costs of the legal system. This results in less bad publicity and less costs for all involved. The JVC truly has the industry’s best interests at heart and protects the industry on a daily basis. I am proud to donate to the JVC.”

“We’re proud of the progress we’ve made in the last few years,” says Cecilia L. Gardner, JVC’s executive director and general counsel. “With the added help of the industry, we can do so much more. We have made a good start on our campaign with the help of our board. Now, it is time for us to ask the industry at large for their help.”

The JVC Annual Campaign is currently accepting donations. For more information, contact the JVC at (212) 997-2002.

Also at the luncheon, the JVC nominated new officers and board members who will serve two-year terms.

The new officers are:

* JVC President, Mr. Hank B. Siegel, President, Hamilton Jewelers.

* JVC 1st Vice President, Mr. Laurence R. Grunstein, President, Citizen Watch Company of America, Inc.

* JVC Secretary, Mr. Michael W. Paolercio, Co-Chairman, Michael Anthony Jewelers, Inc.

* JVC Treasurer, Mr. Steven Kaiser, President, Kaiser Times, Inc.

The new board of directors are: Babette Goodman Cohen, I.B. Goodman; Joel Schechter, Honora; Beryl Raff, J.C. Penny; Mary Forte, Zales; John Bridge, Ben Bridge Co.; Aron Suna, Shreve & Co.; Esther Fortunoff, Fortunoff’s Fine Jewelry; Koichi Takahashi, Mikimoto; Meg Ostrum, Sears; Robert Bridel, AGS; Susan Eisen, Susan Eisen’s Fine Jewelry; Callum Barton, Richmont; Charles D. Lein, S’West/Stuller; Ollie Keene, Helzberg Diamonds.

The Jewelers Vigilance Committee, founded in 1917, is a not-for-profit trade association whose mission is to maintain the jewelry industry’s highest ethical standards. JVC offers precious metals testing, compliance monitoring and dispute arbitration, among many other services. JVC is considered the industry’s guardian of ethics and integrity, and is a resource for both trade and consumers.