The directors of the Jewelers 24 Karat Club of Southern California have selected West Bryson, president/chief executive officer of West Bryson & Associates and Steve Robbins, president/CEO of Robbins Bros., to be the 2005 recipients of its highest honor, the Excellence in Service Award. The Excellence in Service Award recognizes individuals who have had substantial impact on the jewelry industry.
The award will be presented on Oct. 8 at the Club’s Annual Fall Dinner Dance, a black-tie event held in the Crystal Ballroom at the Beverly Hills Hotel.
Bryson began his career in the jewelry industry as a sales rep with W.R. Cobb Co. in 1946, with a territory eventually spanning the United States and Canada, Cuba, and Puerto Rico. His career eventually brought him out to California, where he joined the 24 Karat Club in 1956, serving as its president in 1972. In 1973 he founded West Bryson & Associates, a sales-representative organization in which West continues to be active.
Bryson also has served many industry organizations, including the Wholesale Jewelers Association, the Watch Material and Jewelers Association, and the Pacific Jewelry Show executive committee. He served on the board of directors of the Jewelers Vigilance Committee from 1972 to 1975. He was the only duly elected president of the Golden Nuggets to serve a two-year term, from 1966 to 1968.
Robbins grew up working part time in his father’s jewelry store in Pasadena, William Pitt Jewelers. Robbins and his brother Skip expanded the company into a chain of 14 stores located in regional shopping centers throughout Southern California. Beginning in 1995, they created a new freestanding store model focusing exclusively on engagement rings, wedding bands, and bridal jewelry called Robbins Bros., World’s Biggest Engagement Ring Store. Robbins Bros. currently is executing a national rollout and plans to have 32 stores by 2008.
Robbins served 10 years on the board of Leading Jewelers Guild in various capacities including president and chairman. He also serves on the board of directors of Diamond Council of America. Robbins integrated and championed community service into the value system at Robbins Bros., including support and assistance to abused, neglected, and critically ill children in the greater Los Angeles area.