Women at the Helm

Some come from a family background of fine jewelry. Others fell in love with the product or the challenge and forged their own way. Their fields differ, ranging from retailing and design to manufacturing, contracting and stone dealing. Their important commonality is vision: each recognized an opportunity to provide a service or product unavailable before. Each started her business from the ground up; she didn’t inherit it, marry it or win it in a crap game. This isn’t intended to denigrate the accomplishment of those who have taken over a family business from father or husband. But these women did it the hard way: they started from scratch. In researching their stories, we found they have a lot in common: guts, love for the business and determination to succeed supported by a sense of humor and a certain undeniable charm. Most got their early experience working for others, but so

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