By Jennifer Heebner, Editor in Chief
Attendees to the 2023 AGTA GemFair Tucson encountered a fresh new seminar format that was such a hit, it’s returning for 2024, courtesy of Shelly Sergent. The Curator for the Somewhere in the Rainbow collection doubles as the Curator for GemFair programming, which takes a “Quality versus Quantity” approach with fewer but more interactive and useful presentations in AGTA’s ELEVATED Seminar Series, which is sponsored by the American Gem Society.
“Starting last year, the new speaker series went from multiple rooms and speakers at a time—and guests having to decide what they wanted to attend and miss—to one room, one speaker or panel at a time, and one audience getting the same content and messages,” she explains. “From watching live cutting to jewelry making, attendee response was great as people didn’t have to sacrifice one favorite topic for another.”
New for this year is Gary Roskin, Editor in Chief of Roskin Gem News Report, serving as the emcee.
“Gary will introduce each speaker, give a little background, and ensure all audio-visuals, times, presentation, uploads, etc., go as planned,” she adds. “He will also share a gorgeous book, donated by The Smithsonian, to each speaker as a thank you gift.”
Cindy Woodward (the wife of AGTA’s Director of Security, Skip Woodward) of AFAB Enterprises will assist in ensuring speakers have water and that doors are closed promptly when a talk begins. “She’ll be Gary’s lovely right-hand assistant, ensuring speakers have all they need to bring their A game as well as assisting guests with questions and directions to rooms,” confirms Sergent.
Curious about the content this year? Check out all the offerings by clicking here. Seminars total 14 and will take place in the Tucson Convention Center’s new meeting rooms 201–203. Meanwhile, the Live Gem Cutting Series happens in room 204; there are three cutters to learn from. Thank you to Tucson Todd’s Gems for providing the benches!
Finally, MJSA Journal LIVE Seminars also occur in room 204. Three master jewelers will tackle live bench demonstrations, with the tools and benches sponsored by Rio Grande Jewelry Making Supplies.
Morning pastries, coffee, juice, and water, courtesy of AGTA, will be served in the “Sunshine” room at 8:00 a.m. ahead of the day’s seminars.
Haven’t yet registered for GemFair? Click here to do so.
See you at GemFair Tucson, Tuesday, Jan. 30–Sunday, Feb. 4, 2024.