Florence Steps Down as JIC Spokesperson

Elizabeth Florence, executive director of the Jewelry Information Center, has resigned.

“I leave on excellent terms, and I’ve achieved every personal and professional goal I established for myself when I started,” she told JCK. At press time, she was exploring several options, some in the jewelry industry and some outside of it.

The executive director position is being redefined, said Steven Kaiser, chairman of JIC.

“The organization is doing great, membership is up, and we’ve had great p.r. [during Florence’s tenure],” he said. “But this is now so much more of a ‘one world’ industry, and there are so many new issues that have come up that we really need to think in terms of ‘issues management,’ as well as fashion p.r.”

Kaiser added, “We need both, but with all the new issues coming up like conflict diamonds, treatments, and terrorism, what if some politician decides it’s easy to go after the jewelry industry because it doesn’t have the power to fight back? Who’s going to stand up in support of an industry that’s perceived as a luxury industry, even if we know it’s not [only luxury]?”

As a result of rising concerns about global issues, JIC will be cooperating more closely with its partner Jewelers of America. JIC will remain independent and still have its own board, says Kaiser. His two-year term as chairman ends in July, at which time the chairman-elect, John Green of Connecticut-based Lux, Bond, & Green, will take over. Other paid members of the JIC staff will remain in their positions.