Industry and People: June 2019

COMINGS AND GOINGS

Darin Rabb
Darin Rabb

Darin Rabb has become the North American brand president of IWC Schaffhausen. He was most recently vice president of global retail brand marketing at Nike.

Sebastian “Seb” Hobbs, who served as Signet Jewelers president and chief customer officer since 2017, stepped down from the role in April.

Bonhams has appointed ­Leslie Roskind as a senior jewelry specialist. She most recently worked at Fred ­Leighton and Windsor Jewels.

Iris Van der Veken
Iris Van der Veken

The Responsible Jewellery Council has appointed Iris Van der Veken as its executive director. She replaces Andrew Bone, who announced his intention to retire last year. Van der Veken previously served as director of public affairs and international policy for the Dubai Multi Commodities Centre and also worked for Signet Jewelers and Rosy Blue.

RJ Watches, formerly known as RJ Romain Jérôme, has named Benoit Vulliet its new managing director of the Americas. Vulliet is the former director of sales and marketing for North America for LVMH’s Zenith brand.

Johnnie White
Johnnie White

The American Society of Appraisers has ­appointed Johnnie White to be its new CEO. An association ­professional, White ­replaces Lee P. Hackett, a career appraiser who has served as ASA’s CEO on an interim basis since October 2017.

Jeremy Schwartz, the former Body Shop CEO who has been Pandora’s chief operating officer since September, has left the company. Schwartz and chief financial officer Anders Boyer had served as co-CEOs on an interim basis following the departure of CEO Anders Colding Friis last year.

Kirk Aronson
Kirk Aronson

Chippenhook, the Lewisville, Texas–based manufacturer of luxury packaging and displays, recently hired Kirk Aronson to be its vice president of business development. He previously worked as vice president of sales for Versace and Bell & Ross.

GIA has ­appointed ­Shahdeh Ammadi to as director of institute relations, a newly created position. In her new role, Ammadi, who previously worked at ­Columbia ­University, will oversee GIA’s global alumni program, its guest service team, and ­GemKids, which teaches ­children about gemology.

Jamie Kantor
Jamie Kantor

The Palm Beach Show Group has named ­company veteran Jaime Kantor its new chief operating officer. She replaces Dale Chlumsky, who will continue to be involved as a company ­consultant and adviser.

Auction house Phillips has appointed Graeme ­Thompson as its worldwide head of ­jewelry. Based in Hong Kong, Thompson previously served as director of jewelry in Asia for rival auction house Bonhams.

Mastoloni has hired ­Maureen McIntyre as director of merchandising and sales for its Gifts of the Sea division. She replaces director of sales Cathy Dressing, who will retire in July after 30 years with the company.

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Nancy Liu
Nancy Liu

De Beers Group has ­appointed Nancy Liu as CEO of its diamond brand Forever­mark. She was previously its chief operating officer. She replaces Stephen Lussier, who will continue to shape De Beers’ consumer strategy and remains the brand’s chairman.

REMEMBERED

Richard “Dick” Greenwood, owner of gem company A.F. Greenwood Co. Inc. and former leader at the American Gem Trade Association and Jewelers Board of Trade, died April 13. He was 70.

Gemologist E. Alan Jobbins, a founder of the International Colored Gemstone Association and past president of the ­Society of Jewellery Historians, died Feb. 9. He was 95.

COMPANIES

Shopko, the Green Bay, Wis.–based department store chain that sells jewelry, announced plans to liquidate its fleet of more than 300 stores in March, two months after
it filed for Chapter 11 ­bankruptcy protection.

On April 4, Art Fashion Corp., the North American arm of the brand of designer Roberto Cavalli, filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

Lois Hill

Lois Hill, the handcrafted silver jewelry designer, has signed a license agreement with New York City–based Unique Designs to distribute and sell her product.

Jewelry manufacturer and retailer Iconery has been acquired by Heartbeat, a ­marketing technology ­platform that connects brands with millennial and Gen Z audiences. Iconery founder Ivka Adam will remain CEO of Iconery and become chief marketing officer of Heartbeat.

De Beers is closing the International Institute of Diamond Valuation, which it debuted in 2014 with hopes of improving the diamond buyback experience. The company said that ­“consumer-to-consumer” ­diamond recycling was now the best way to ensure consumers get fair value.

Alan Zimmer
Alan Zimmer

Michael C. Fina, an 85-year-old New York City jeweler that shut its brick-and-­mortar store in 2016 to concentrate on online sales, is closing for good.

HONORED

Caryl Capeci

The American Gem Society will honor Reeds president and CEO Alan Zimmer, Chow Tai Fook North America ­president Caryl Capeci, and Leo Schachter Diamond Group principal Elliot ­Tannenbaum at its 2019 Circle of Distinction dinner July 30 at the Plaza hotel in New York City.

Elliot ­Tannenbaum
Elliot ­Tannenbaum