Better Diamond Initiative (BDI) is a collection of thoughts, opinions and news based on views, facts and reports published around the world on the diamond and related industry.
The world has gone through drastic changes and customers have gravitated towards buying habits that in many cases the jewelry industry has failed to compete with. The competition is no longer within the industry alone but outside it as well. Every other brand or category (luxury goods, electronics, automobiles etc.) are successfully communicating their value proposition in an effective manner – they have gone green, online and innovating every day. We think that we need fresh, young opinions about today’s customer and today’s diamond market. We intend to have an open discussion about what we as consumers want and what we as industry members need to do to deliver them.
BDI also aims at creating a global consciousness in opposition to the countless atrocities being done against nature, mankind and mother earth. Our mission is to create awareness relating to diamond related conflicts, human rights and sustainable economic development. We envision a future where diamonds do not claim any lives and offer an opportunity of economic development for everyone so that our children can wake up to a world, which has a healthy environment and fair opportunity for everyone.
We assure you that we will endeavor to voice your opinion, get it heard and hopefully, gradually change what is needed for that Better Diamond in your hands.
BDI has been initiated and is headed by Vyom Shah, an entrepreneur and strategy consultant based out of India. Vyom closely follows the global Gem and Jewelry Industry and is intrigued by the way Diamonds have shaped several economies, impacted markets and becoming part of our lives in more ways than one. He realized the need of an opinion sharing platform in the industry and founded BDI. BDI is supported and keen to engage several bloggers, authors, experts, contributors and readers.
We would love to hear your views and opinions. If you would like to write for BDI or are interested in publishing a post, please mail us on firstname.lastname@example.org
Andrew Hoffman is a freelance writer and journalist from Los Angeles, CA, who has written on behalf of a range of clients including the Livestrong Network and Demand Media. In addition to writing about a range of topics, he enjoys surfing in Santa Monica and collecting classic first-edition novels.
Amish Shah, president of ALTR Created Diamonds, has never been afraid to challenge the status quo. After gaining experience, through his family business, in the diamond industry and in fine jewelry at an early age, he joined R & R Grosbard Inc. in New York in 2001 and helped transform it into an international powerhouse. Ten years later, Amish took over its operations and led a merger with his family business, conceiving R A Riam Group Inc. in New York, which includes ALTR Created Diamonds. As the only vertically-integrated diamond enterprise that provides a true end-to-end product, it creates the purest form of diamonds (type-IIa diamonds) known to man.
Alexander Weindling is the Founder & CEO of CleanOrigin.com. Weindling has served as president of five jewelry companies. His past roles have allowed him to serve as a lead distributor for Kay Jewelers, Zales, JC Penney, Sams Club, and Walmart. After discovering lab created diamonds, he knew instantly this was the smarter, more ethical choice for consumers.
Tom Chatham joined his father in 1965, at Chatham Research Laboratory. His father, Carroll Chatham, was a crystal growing pioneer. Tom was involved in the first Flux ruby research followed by many sapphire colors and flux grown alexandrite. In 1993, Chatham Created Gems Inc. announced their introduction of Created Diamonds. White diamonds were achieved and introduced at the 1996 JCK Show in Las Vegas, followed by pink, yellow and blue diamonds. Tom is now the CEO of the corporation, employing over 300 people worldwide.
Clay Morrison is a freelance graphic artist and content writer from Berkshire. He has written a myriad of topics on new technologies, social media, and pressing topics on environment and workforce development. Clay is also a traveller and fashion enthusiast who loves going around the world to expand his knowledge in clothing design.
Kelly Rice lives in Columbus, Ohio with her wife and their two daughters. In her free time she enjoys word games, reading, hiking and urban exploration.
Rosalinda Sanquiche is Executive Director & COO, Ethical Markets Media. She globally manages the Green Transition Scoreboard® tracking trillions in private green investments; EthicMark Awards; Ethical Money Directory setting standards for professionally managed assets incorporating ESG criteria; and Principles of Ethical Biomimicry Finance®. Her childhood hiking Puerto Rico’s El Yunque National Forest convinced her we must behave sustainably to preserve our magnificent world for generations. She has written for The Guardian, Sustainable Brands, CSRWire, Builder/Architect and others on environment, sustainability and media, and taught environmental policy and field classes combining ecology and policy. She is on the board of directors for ISSP (International Society of Sustainability Professionals) and advises Synergy Asset Strategies, Inc., and 3 Sisters Investments. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa with awards from the National Science and National Hispanic Foundations, earning an MA in Environmental and Resource Policy as a George Washington University Fellow.
Founder – Better Diamond Initiative. Entrepreneur and Strategy Consultant with 10+ years of experience. Diamond enthusiast.
Aasha Gulrajani Swarup
Aasha is a writer with a law degree and a nose for news. She has worked as a business journalist with various mainline newspapers, magazines and online portals in Mumbai and Delhi. Her deep interest in diamonds took her for a walk within the depths of the Kimberley Diamond Mine, in South Africa and has resulted in various stories for newspapers and extensive features for specialised publications catering to the diamond trade, including Diamond World and Indian Jeweller. She cares for the Earth and favours responsible diamond practices to be made mandatory for the diamond industry around the globe.
Anna-Mieke Anderson is the CEO and Founder of MiaDonna and Company – mother and consumer turned philanthropist and entrepreneur. When Anna-Mieke discovered she had most likely purchased a conflict diamond she set out on a single mission to provide consumers with a beautiful, ethical and affordable diamond — made in a modern-day lab environment and created without negatively harming native communities or the earth, while being the sustainable funding source to help repair diamond mining communities.
Edward Fleming is a registered fairtrade goldsmith based in London and is a designer and maker of fine jewellery. Trained in London’s Hatton Garden and soon to enrol at Central Saint Martins college to further study jewellery design. Fascinated by gemstones, their unique properties and a firm believer that if demand for diamonds is to be sustained beyond the super rich, ethics and marketing must play a leading role.
Forum is a student of Jewellery design and manufacturing technology and has interned at a leading Jewelry manufacturing company. Apart from being passionate about Diamonds, she’s an avid blogger who enjoys baking and sketching.
Jennifer is the President of World Web Content Writers. An ardent blogger, Jennifer enjoys music and describers herself as a committed idealist.
Lucy is the founder of Rock & Raw, creating fine jewellery for rock chick yogis and spiritual warriors. Lucy is a dedicated yogi and spiritual trail blazer – committed to creating bold and beautiful pieces crafted from the finest materials.
Priyam is the Founder Director of AIGJ (Auric Institute of Jewellery Design & Gemological Lab) – Central India’s premier institute for Jewelry design and Diamond grading. A Graduate Gemologist (G.G.) and Accredited Jewelry Professional (A.J.P.) from GIA, Priyam is also the Jewelry Designer & Creator for renowned jewelry business house – Auric Gems & Jewellery.
Laura Chavez is the founder of Lark & Berry, a fine jewellery brand exclusively featuring cultured diamonds and stones. After receiving her undergraduate degrees from Rice University in Houston, Texas and an MBA from London Business School, Chavez aspired to start her own jewellery business, but was frustrated at the market’s lack of fairly priced, high-quality and ethically sourced diamonds.
While taking a course at the London Jewellery School, Chavez discovered cultured diamonds, also known as lab-grown diamonds. Learning these were identical diamonds, yet no mining was necessary, and their origin could be traced while always being guaranteed conflict-free, Chavez immediately recognized this opportunity in the market. She set out to introduce a fresh view on luxury during a time when people demand unique experiences in every sector they encounter. In fine jewellery this meant a choice that did not sacrifice quality with stunning design still at the forefront. Shortly after a successful launch, Chavez incorporated the environmental goodwill program where 5 trees are planted for every purchase made. She believes luxury now is not only meant to be more sustainable but should also enable us to give back to our planet.
Eileen McClelland is the Managing Editor of INSTORE. She believes that every jewelry store has the power of cool within them.
Ever since he was 13 and began shooting comedy videos with friends, Clark Watts has sought to make his living through creativity. He received an undergraduate degree in broadcast journalism from the University of Oklahoma. If focus was an issue after graduating; spreading himself thin across writing, broadcasting, music and directing, he found the solution in working with disrupting cultured diamonds jewellery brand Lark & Berry, where he’s able to combine many creative and journalistic passions into producing the brand’s podcast, The Diamond Disruptor, steadily climbing world charts on multiple audio streaming platforms.
Clark Watts lives in Los Angeles. He continues to discover new, inspiring things there all the time.
Soha Javaherian is the Co-Founder of Soha Diamond Co. His last name translates to “Family of Jewelers.” He is a private jeweler in Madison, Wisconsin and a national e-commerce retailer. He prides himself on being a jeweler re-imagined for the 21st century, offering eco/human conscious fine jewelry.
As a 10th generation jeweler, GIA Graduate Gemologist (G.G.), GIA Accredited Jewelry Professional (A.J.P.), and GIA Graduate Pearls (G.P.) he gained invaluable perspective on an industry that’s ripe for disruption. His vast industry experience ranges from working at the GIA World Headquarters as a Diamond Grader to working at Tiffany & Co. Today, his company specializes in exclusively offering laboratory grown diamonds and gemstones in 100% recycled precious metals.
Julie Matthews is a freelance writer and blog contributor. Her writing covers topics in entertainment, lifestyle, and beauty.
Rae is a graduate of Tufts University with a combined International Relations and Chinese degree. After spending time living and working abroad in China, she returned to NYC to pursue her career and continue curating quality content. Rae is passionate about travel, food, and writing (of course).