AGTA GemFair 2017 AGTA GemFair 2017

AGTA GemFair 2017

To view a recorded session, click the YouTube video below the seminar title. 

Appraisal Essentials - Increasing Sales, Service, and Appraisals

Speakers: Cos Altobelli

This presentation will cover the appraisal essentials including increasing sales, service, and appraisals; pricing colored gemstones and diamonds; stone setting; Rapaport subscription changes; Synthetic and treated diamonds waiver; grading diamond melee; appraisal software; U.S.P.A.P. update; American Gem Society independent appraiser availability; an advanced personal property appraiser program; color vision testing changes, and advertising and publicity.


Detecting Jade Imitations & Treatments

Speakers: Jeff Mason, GG, Renee Newman, GG

Basic and advanced techniques for detecting jadeite and nephrite treatments, imitations & look- a-likes, including visual, tactile and audible methods.


From the Earth to the Laboratory: Understanding Consumer Interest in Laboratory Grown Diamonds and Gemstones

Speakers: Kate Peterson

For those still unsure, the choice of whether or not to offer laboratory grown diamonds and gems in your store should start with sound information. For those who carry the product, training is the key to increased sales. For those who prefer to avoid lab grown diamonds and gems, having the right information will enable salespeople to answer customer questions in an honest, non-judgmental way while building value in earth mined stones. Ultimately, in today's market, an understanding of lab grown diamonds and gemstones is critical for all industry professionals. More importantly, understanding the motivation of the lab grown shopper is essential to your ability to earn their trust and confidence, and ultimately their business - whether selling lab grown or earth mined product. Join in this unique presentation/discussion with Kate and a panel of retailers offering differing perspectives to explore the current laboratory grown market and the real consumer drives that are allowing for its expansion.


Gemmologists and Gemmology

Speakers: Alan Hodgkinson

The AGTA community is honored to have the venerable Alan Hodgkinson to present his latest gemstone observations as well as his latest book, Gem Testing Techniques. He will share his practical gemological techniques and identification strategies for colored gemstones. Always a seminar favorite, Mr. Hodgkinson will inspire new students of gemology and even enlighten the seasoned gemologist. This will be Mr. Hodgkinson's 25th year presenting in Tucson.


Gemstones in the Digital Age 2.0 - Marketing Colored Gemstones in a Brave New World

Speakers: Bernadette Mack

Back by popular demand! Are you wondering how to connect with the modern gemstone consumer on digital or social media? Confused about how to tell the story of gemstone origin to your customers? Bring your questions to the lively, thought-provoking panel of digital media and colored gemstone stars and participate in a discussion that explores how gems present an important opportunity to set your business apart. Back by popular demand, this panel will go to the next level on how - and why - to connect with the modern gemstone consumer on digital and social media, the increasing importance of gemstone origin to consumers, and how gemstones present an important opportunity to set your business apart as a designer or retailer. Panelists: Thought leaders and pioneers from a cross section of the jewelry/gemstone industry.


In Search of Consistency: Gemologists Lost in Color Space

Speakers: Christopher Smith

As a gemological laboratory that has been active for four decades, AGL and its principle Chris Smith have been witness to a lot of trends in the colored stone industry and the evolution of lab reports. One of the more recent and significant moves by several labs is to include fanciful terms such as 'Pigeon's Blood' and 'Royal Blue', to name only two. Terms such as these are now commonly encountered on lab reports for ruby, sapphire, emerald and other gem varieties. AGL's perspective on this trend will be discussed, as well as other possible alternative methods used to describe color.


Intellectual Property Law for Jewelers

Speakers: Sara E. Yood, Esq.

Intellectual property - copyright, trademark, patent, and other areas of intellectual property law - is an important part of any business, and understanding how to use it to protect and promote your work can give you a leg up. In this seminar, we'll learn the difference between copyright, trademark and patent, what can qualify for protection, how to protect it, and the practical applications in the jewelry industry. This presentation will cover trade secrets and the right of publicity, which can affect how you advertise your products to the public. Come armed with questions - our expert is ready to offer guidance and education on protecting yourself and your IP.


Make Responsible Sourcing a Part of Your Sales Presentation - A Proactive Approach to Promoting Progressive Business

Speakers: Kate Peterson, Roxana Lucas, G.G.

Just because they don't ask, doesn't mean they aren't testing your commitment. For today's consumer, social and environmental responsibility are important value components in any luxury purchase. Buying decisions are often based on a positive, proactive presentation of the information that is important to the buyer even before they ask. Successful salespeople in today's market know how to dial in on value triggers and how to handle client questions directly and clearly. Successful business owners know the value of training sales associates on the elements of responsibility and sourcing basics so they can present the store brand position honestly and effectively. In this seminar, Kate will provide the tools and techniques you need to be at the forefront of your market with today's responsible consumers.


Market Update

Speakers: Richard B. Drucker, GG

Market trends, industry issues, and the gems you'll see in Tucson. Researcher, author, and colored gemstone expert Richard Drucker offers compelling insights and sometimes uncomfortable truths as he shares what to expect regarding quantities, qualities, and pricing in 2017 and going forward.


Mining for Gemstones and Mineral Specimens

Speakers: Jim Clanin

Gemstone and mineral specimen mining is different than all other types of mining. The gem miner must gently take apart the rock to search and recover the gem material he or she is looking for. It is best if the owner/operator were also the driller, blaster and mucker if full recovery is desired. Valuation of a gem pocket is not possible until all the material is out of the deposit, clean, trimmed and evaluated individually. The value depends on esthetics and completeness. Damaged specimens devaluate as the damage increases. Mr. Clanin's presentation will discuss old and new methods of breaking rock and recovering the gemstones and mineral specimens with minimal damage.


New Directions, Advancements, and Techniques - A Perspective

Speakers: Alan Hart

Alan Hart, former Principle Curator of gems and minerals at the Natural History Museum in London is now the new CEO of Gem-A. He will share his thoughts on his transition to Gem-A - a scientific based educational institution established in 1908, many of whose 'founding fathers' were also Museum Scientists, to provide education and practical training that "..marked the beginning of organized Gemology, not only in this country, but in the whole world". From these earliest beginnings, Alan will share his vision for Gem-A, for advancements in new technologies, treatments and recognition of Gemology as a scientific branch in 2004 will require Gem-A to adapt and evolve, in continuing to be relevant and to educate our new generations of Gemologists in a rapidly changing, linked and complex environment.


No Stone Unturned - A Life in the World of High Jewelry

Speakers: Larry French

Larry French spent the first half of his long career working for the French jeweler Claude Arpels of Van Cleef & Arpels and the second half with the Italian jeweler Gianmaria Buccellati. Mr. French has traveled, either by their side or for projects on their behalf, to cities such as Srinagar. Bombay, Riyadh, Nairobi and Istanbul plus much of Europe. It has been, he says, the journey of his life. While on this journey he has had the honor to sell some of the most extraordinary jewelry to some very legendary clients. During the lecture Larry discusses these events and also the differences between the two master jewelers. He discusses not only the adventures but also a few monumental misadventures he has had in the world of great jewels and jewelers.


One Hundred Years of Cultured Pearls

Speakers: Elisabeth Strack

The year 2016 is memorable in so far as it marks one hundred years of cultured pearl production. 1916 can be seen as the actual birth year of the round cultured pearl as it was in this year that Kokishi Mikimoto started regular production on the basis of the Mise-Nishikawa method. Presentation will discuss cultured pearl production, including: Akoya, South Sea, Tahitian, Mexican, and China. Also covered will be Masao Fujita's development of Bewa pearls, baroque and colorful freshwater pearls in Japan followed by huge quantities from China. This talk will give a systematic summary of how the different types of pearls are related to and can be distinguished from each other.


Organics - The Good, The Bad and the Ugly

Speakers: Eric Fritz

Organics- Yes this is a hot topic. Organic gems are always misunderstood and puzzling. Now with an increased pressure on illegal animal trade, it is a good time to brush up. Fossil Ivory is now being regulated alongside modern Elephant Ivory. State regulations along with new federal laws are confusing. We will help you see why. Ivory, bone, tusk, and horn will be the emphasis. Lots of hands on materials to see and examine. Come and explore and challenge your previous knowledge.


Pathways to Profitability

Speakers: Karen Signorino, CPCU, CIC, CRM, Vice President, JM Insurance Services

Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company offers quick and easy jeweler programs that can contribute to your profitability in 2017 in more ways than one. From rewarding sales staff to offsetting your insurance premium, the additional dollars you earn could be used in a variety of ways. This presentation will give you pointers on how to increase your customer loyalty, encourage repeat business, and increase your bottom line.


Precious Heirlooms - A Voice From the Past

Speakers: Denise Nelson

Precious heirlooms, consisting of collectable objects like fine jewelry and gems, reveal many interesting facts about how and why some gemstones are used a long time ago and today. Estate Jewelry has become extremely popular and knowing what gems to use for restoration and repairs becomes a necessity. Also, a renewed interest in tracing one's ancestors, and learning more about the items they owned, provides the jeweler with a great opportunity to "romance" the item. Learning about the "when, what, where, and why" of gemstones creates a great opportunity for the jeweler to build trust and gain confidence when handling precious heirlooms.


Responsible Sourcing - What does it mean to YOU?

Speakers: John Croston

John Croston will present a discussion of the responsibly sourced supply chain, along with the laws that are currently in place. This presentation will include the positive changes in the supply chain. Most importantly, how to support and market these positives with marketing to the millennial.


Roundtable Live Hands-on & Interactive

Speakers: Betty Sue King

Claim a seat at this Roundtable. Live in the moment through the eyes of your clients and feel the exhilaration of indulging passions for things unique and precious. Experience getting first dibs on remarkable pearls. Through this unique intimate setting you will sell more gems, attract new clients, and build custom designs as well as develop collectors and repeat buyers. Engage in a step-by-step guide to plan your own Roundtable. See invitations, place settings & guest interactions. You will be inspired to formulate your own Roundtable and drive your business to greater heights.


Sourcing Colored Gemstones in Afghanistan and Central Asia

Speakers: Gary W. Bowersox

This lecture is an update on mine to market gems from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Tajikistan and other Central Asian countries. Details on sourcing gems in this part of the world will be discussed in the light of the latest political situations, Global Witness, and other reports. Gary W. Bowersox has been exploring and purchasing gems in this area for over forty-five years. He is a member of AGTA, ICA, GIA Alumni and President of Geovision, Inc.


Sourcing of Pink Diamonds: Argyle and Non-Argyle Origin

Speakers: Branko Deljanin

These days, consumers are very conscious about the origin of products. In addition to demanding fair trade coffee and other products, it is reasonable to expect a similar interest in knowing where their valuable coloured diamond comes from. The science of gemmology is evolving and more advanced instruments are being used in gem labs for routine testing of diamonds and coloured stones to determine not only if something is natural, treated, or synthetic, but also where gems are coming from.


Sustainable Gemstones

Speakers: Sheahan Stephen

Sheahan Stephen, will cover the importance of sustainable gemstones in today's marketplace. He will define what sustainability is and give specific (pictorial) examples of the process that a sustainable gemstone company would follow in order to offer you a sustainable gemstone. He discuss who the current buyers of sustainable gemstones are and why they are specifically asking for gemstones sourced through this method, also discuss and answer if this is just a trend or if there will be longevity in this specific sector of our industry. Lastly, Sheahan will cover which countries have a sustainable gemstone mining model in place currently and what questions to ask your suppliers when looking for sustainable gemstones.


Update on Mining & Gem Production from Burma, & Sri Lanka

Speakers: Edward Boehm, GG, CG, FGA

Edward Boehm, owner of RareSource will share exciting travel experiences and new supply information from his latest gem buying trips: Burma has seen dramatic political and social change in recent years which has opened the doors to increased tourism, foreign investment, and mining. Sri Lanka's mining and cutting sectors have enjoyed significant growth from increased domestic mining production coupled with gem rough imported from other source countries for cutting and polishing. However, decreased global demand, particularly from China may affect Sri Lanka's growth in the short term. Political uncertainty, decreased mining, and foreign competition have forced Thailand to increase its domestic cutting, finished jewelry and treatment methods to remain viable. Vietnam has struggled to compete in production and cutting but has proven resources of ruby and spinel. Increased demand for spinel and new finds near Luc Yen could help Vietnam regain its gem-producing status.


What Makes a Gem a Gem - Quality Grading Colored Gemstones

Speakers: Richard W. Wise

What color is pigeon's blood? Is a padparadscha some kind of a sapphire? What are the major differences between natural and cultured pearls? Which opals are better, Australian or Ethiopian? How does fluorescence affect price, in rubies, in diamonds? How do I talk to my customers about treatments and ethical sourcing? Blissful ignorance? As a retailer specializing in color for thirty-five years, Richard has visited most of the major gem mining areas. He is the author of two books; Secrets Of The Gem Trade, The Connoisseur's Guide and The French Blue (the story of Jean Baptiste Tavernier and the Hope Diamond). Mr. Wise has been a guest speaker at GIA, Sotheby's, Skinner's, and Yale University.