(CARLSBAD, Calif.) – The GIA (Gemological Institute of America) Board of Governors held their first in-person meeting in two years, Nov. 5 – 8, in Carlsbad, California. The Board reviewed the Institute’s strategic plans and priorities to ensure GIA will continue to advance its consumer protection mission. Before the Board meeting, the GIA global research team, including several Governors, convened for the Institute’s 15th annual research meeting to review and discuss the extensive research and discoveries that underpin GIA’s education programs, laboratory services and instrument development, all in support of the Institute’s mission to ensure the public trust in gems and jewelry.
The Board welcomed two new Governors – Dave Bindra, vice president of operations and head of acquisitions at B&B Fine Gems, and Marcus ter Haar, an experienced diamond industry executive. Lisa Locklear, senior vice president and chief financial officer at Avanir Pharmaceuticals, was named Chair-Elect, succeeding Dione D. Kenyon, previous president and CEO of The Jewelers Board of Trade. The board also bid farewell to Governor Amit Dhamani, CEO and managing director of Dhamani Jewels Group, who completed his nine-year term.
“I’ve been honored to serve as Chair of the GIA Board of Governors since 2016, and look forward to continuing on the Board and working with Chair-Elect Lisa Locklear,” said Dione Kenyon. “Dave Bindra and Marcus ter Haar bring valuable industry expertise and leadership experience. Their experience and guidance, in this time of rapid change for our industry, makes them excellent additions to the Board.”
“We are delighted for the insights and perspectives that these two new Governors, and our entire Board, bring to propelling GIA’s consumer protection mission during this critical inflection point for the industry,” said Susan Jacques, GIA president and CEO.
“The work presented at the GIA research meeting was incredibly impressive; there is no other organization with such a comprehensive, robust and mission-driven research program,” said Tom Moses, GIA Governor, executive vice president and chief laboratory and research officer. “GIA is pushing beyond traditional gemological research into fundamental aspects of geology, mineralogy and the physics of diamonds, all with the ultimate goal of protecting consumers.”
Dave Bindra is vice president of operations and head of acquisitions at B&B Fine Gems. He is a colored gemstone specialist with experience in sourcing, cutting and recutting fine and rare colored gemstones. He serves on the boards of the Jewelers Vigilance Committee, American Gem Society Young Title Holders, 24k Club Southern California, Black in Jewelry Coalition and the Jewelers Advisory Council. Mr. Bindra is a graduate of the University of Southern California, and received his GIA Graduate Gemologist diploma in 2007.
Marcus ter Haar is an experienced diamond industry executive, well-versed in sectors across the value chain. Previously the managing director of the Okavango Diamond Company, he has extensive knowledge of governance. He serves on a selection of private sector and not for profit boards, including the international luxury-tourism company Wilderness Holdings, Diamonds Do Good and the Lady Khama Charitable Trust.
The week before the Board meeting, several of the Governors joined more than 60 GIA staff in a hybrid in-person and virtual meeting to review the latest research advances into natural and laboratory-grown diamonds, colored stones, pearls and specialized instrumentation. The three-day meeting covered research and applications for artificial intelligence, diamond origin determination and other aspects of GIA’s extensive research program. The research and Board of Governors meetings were held under strict health and safety protocols.