The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) will host a panel discussion entitled "Embracing Sustainability Amid New Consumer Expectations," at the JCK Las Vegas Show on Friday, May 31, at 12:00 p.m. The panel will be moderated by Susan Jacques, GIA president and CEO and five experts will address the need for sustainability in day-to-day operations of small and large companies in the gem and jewelry industry.
"Corporate social responsibility is a growing consumer expectation, and companies need to account for it," said Kathryn Kimmel, senior vice president and chief marketing officer. "Our industry can benefit from amplifying sustainability efforts of retailers, manufacturers and suppliers."
The invited panelists are:
- Dr. Saleem Ali, Blue and Gold Distinguished Professor of Energy and the Environment at the University of Delaware, will provide an overview of the environmental and social impact of the gemstone industry.
- Lisa Bridge, president and CEO of Ben Bridge Jeweler, will discuss how to communicate social responsibility to employees as well as the consumer.
- Marcus ter Haar, managing director of Okavango Diamond Company, will share an overview of how natural diamond is contributing to the economic development and employment in mining communities where few other options for livelihood exist.
- Claire Piroddi, sustainability manager for watches & jewelry at Kering, will share how their brands early adoption of sustainability transformed the brands perception.
- Nadja Swarovski, member of the Swarovski Executive Board, will speak about the sustainability initiatives that Swarovski does on the manufacturing level, including laboratory-grown diamonds.