The revelation this week that General Motors’ new CEO Mary Barra is paid half of what her male predecessor received is sparking debate about the pay gap between men and women. This got me wondering if such a gap exists among independent jewelry store owners. In our 2013 Big Survey, we asked store owners what their total personal earnings were as well as their gender, so it took only a couple of minutes to come up with a graphic representation of any disparity in earnings between male and female store owners:
When Marie Helene Morrow , one of the most respected jewelry retailers in the industry and 2014 winner of the GEM Lifetime Achievement Award, invites you to visit one of her suppliers for a buying presentation, you don’t say no. In fact, you jump at the chance. So it was that I was able to sit in with Marie Helene (owner of Reinhold Jewelers, with three locations in Puerto Rico) as she shopped the collection of Phillips House, a designer out of south Florida who was exhibiting at Centurion.
When we ask jewelers what they’ve learned from their time in the business, one of the more frequent responses we get is to be grateful for what you have. And in the jewelry industry there is plenty to be thankful for – sharing in people’s good times, working with beautiful materials, and the chance to make a good living.