Saturday, March 17, 2018



CGA Gem Conference 2016

October 29, 2016
Terminal City Club
837 West Hastings Street
Vancouver, BC  V6C 1B6

Contact: CGA Office for more information
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The 2016 CGA conference and Gala Graduation dinner is being offered once again in Vancouver
Download a conference registration form  and send to the CGA office  to reserve your place for the day.

Navigation of this event

Early-Bird Member Prices Extended until Sept 30, 2016 due to issues with emails and website

  Member Early Bird Price Member price after Sept 15 Non Member Early Bird Price Non Member Price after Sept 15
Sat Gala Only       $149.00 $199.00  $199.00  $240.00
 Saturday Full Day and Gala   $319.00 $397.00  $419.00  $497.00


Take advantage of early-bird registration rates by Sept 15! Download the Registration form  and send to the CGA office at the address or fax number specified on the form!


Terminal City Club Hotel - Booking Information

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Call: 1.855.678.8998.

Booking Code: VCC 16


Deluxe king or double room - $179 + tax
City View suite (king) - $199+ tax
Harbour View suite (king or double) - $219 + tax

Please note that rooms are available on a first come, first served basis!

Request for Donations - Silent Auction

Conference hosts CGA,  invite you to donate items to the annual Gem Conference Auction. Needless to say, for a good auction interesting objects are needed. Let’s make this year's auction the best yet, and the most fun. Not only is it a chance to get that specimen you have been hunting for, it's a way to raise funds to help cover costs of the conference and raise funds to support the Canadian Gemmological Association. So dig into those old boxes in the garage, clear out the cupboards, drawers and shelves. Who knows what you might find to donate!

This year, through the VCC Foundation, donations between $50 and $1000 will receive a tax receipt when accompanied by documentation which indicates the fair market value of the item (for example, a purchase receipt or an appraisal)!  Those items over $1000 require a third party appraisal (government rules). All donations are greatly appreciated. We will have the appraisals done, if required.  Please note that donations of “services” are not eligible for tax receipts.

Please download the donation form and help us out!

 Donations received by the CGA 2016

The CGA would like to gratefully acknowledge and give thanks to the following for their support of our organization:

Alan Hodgkinson
Accredited Gemmologiists Association

Program Guide Advertising Rates

This year the Annual Canadian Gemmological Association Conference and Graduation will be held on October 29, 2016 in Vancouver, BC.  We have an exciting list of international speakers lined up!!

We are currently putting together the conference program guide.  As an advertiser in this year’s program guide, you will profile your company to all conference registrants.  All attendees will be gemmologists, geologists, jewellers or goldsmiths from across Canada and the Pacific Northwest of the United States.  The advertising rates are as follows:

Full Colour Ad Rates

One only

Full colour, outside back cover


One only

Full colour, inside back cover


One only

Full colour, inside front cover


Six only

Full colour, full page

$350. ea

Four only

Full colour, ½ page ads

$200. ea

Black and White Ad Rates

Full page

$200. ea

½ page

$150. ea

¼ page

$75. ea

1/8 page – business card size

$50. ea

A full tax receipt will be issued to you from the Canadian Gemmological Assn.
Proceeds from the Gem Conference will be used to purchase gemmological equipment for students.

For any further details please call:
Donna Hawrelko, Conference Chair
Phone: H- 604.926.2599, or W-604.871.7000 Ext 8694
C- 604.290.3575
Fax:  604.443.8393
Email:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Conference Speaker Biographies
Biographies will be added as recieved by the CGA

Dr. Lee Groat
Eric Fritz
Eric Braunwart
Warren Boyd
Andy Rendle
Mike Botha
Ari Goosen

Lee GroatLee Groat, PhD 
Lee Groat grew up in Kingston, Ontario, and graduated from Queen's University with a B.Sc. (Honours, Geology) in 1982. From there he went to the University of Manitoba, graduating with a Ph.D. degree in 1988. In 1988-1989 he was a NATO Postdoctoral Fellow at Cambridge University.

Dr. Groat has been at UBC since July 1989. In 1999 he was awarded the Young Scientist Medal of the Mineralogical Association of Canada. Throughout the 1990's he was at various times an Associate Editor for both Canadian Mineralogist and American Mineralogist, and from 2001 to 2006 was Editor of American Mineralogist.
In 2002 he was awarded a Killam Prize for Excellence in Teaching.
In 2003 he was elected a Fellow of the Mineralogical Society of America.
In 2009 the new mineral groatite, NaCaMn2+2(PO4)[PO3(OH)]2, was named in his honour.

He is currently Past-President of the Mineralogical Association of Canada, former Co-Editor (2012) and present Editor (2013-present) of Canadian Mineralogist, and Director of the Integrated Sciences program at UBC.

Eric Fritz
 Eric Fritz holds a bachelor's degree in Zoology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. A lifelong collector in Natural history, gems, minerals and shells and fossils, led to a second
career in gemomology.  His science background fostered his specialty organic gemstones, primarily pearls. Eric's passion is saltwater pearls, especially natural ones from shellfish other than oysters. Eric obtained his graduate Eric Fritzgemmology degree from Gem'A, Fellow of the Gemmological Association and is currently working on Graduate Diamonds. He is Manager for North America for Gem-A and resides in Tucson, Arizona. 
Pearls can be one of the most confusing subjects in gemmology ...natural, cultured, treated? We will look at the origins of natural pearls as ornaments and then brielfy look at cultured, treated and how to tell them all apart or can we?


 Eric Braunwart

EB HDSHT      Eric C Braunwart is president and owner of Columbia Gem House, Inc. Mr Braunwart started Columbia Gem House, Inc. in 1976 and is a partner in Sustain Associates since May 2010. Mr. 
Braunwart graduated from Washington State University in 1975 with a BS in Landscape Architecture and Environmental Design, as well as a BA in Fine Arts Jewelery Design.

   Mr. Braunwart spent about 10 Years traveling to the gem producing countries working with mining and cutting facilities. For the last thirteen years, Columbia Gem House, Inc. has worked to develop transparent fair trade oriented supply chains and bring these gemstones to the jewelery retailers and manufacturers worldwide.

    Mr. Braunwart has been very active nationally in advancing the level of eithics and standards adhered to throughout the industry.  Thirteen years ago, he ddeveloped Fair Trade protocols for the gemstone varieties produced by Columbia Gem House Inc.  He started Fair Trade Gems because he saw several things happpening within the colour gemstones industry that concerned him. 
Mr. Braunwart is a founding member of the American Gem Trade Association in 1981. This organization has grown to the largest in the United States  for wholesale gemstone dealers. He has been on the Board of Directors for approximately 20 previous years and held positions as President, Vice President, Marketing Chairperson, secretary and Board Member.

Andy Rendle
1 800 Emerald has been operating under Andy Rendle and his teams efforts since 1989, the year the emerald wars started across two of Colombia's mountain ranges.  Five years later with theandy Emerald Miners vs Cocaine Cartel war over, he was helping direct and operate one of the most innovative emerald mining projects in the middle Chivor emerald belt.   He is now the Chief Operating Officer of a spin off project called Cosigo Resources listed on the  Toronto Stock Exchange Venture, a gold exploration project with a diamond property participation in Northern Canada, and a gold project that outcrops on both sides of the Columbian/ Brazillian border with geological similarities to the world famous Witwaters and deposit of Johannesburg.
 Andy has a background in security advising, assisting oil and mining companies in high risk areas, and maintains service with the Reserve Canadian Armed Forces as a 2ndLt when he stops back in Canada. Andy worked on the Energy Dispersive X-Ray Analysis Isotope Emerald origins project with Dr. Cronin out of Cleveland State University.  He has been on discovery channel twice for work with emeralds, one time featuring their "pet" project to train dogs to detect target chemicals like polymer fillers in stone selection.  Andy assisted the GIA  in the article "On the Identification of Various Emerald Filling Substances: Gems & Gemology" by Mary Johnson.  Andy finished his BA degree at UViC, but spent most of that time transferred to Universities in Bogota, Guatemala and even Havana.

Warren Boyd
Experienced market oriented gemmologist & geologist with a specialty in rough diamonds and coloured gemstones. Sessional Lecturer at the University of Toronto – Earth Sciences Department lecturing on the discovery, assessment and evaluation of diamond and coloured WFBProfessionalPhotoScangemstone deposits around the world.

Director of Marketing for Potentate Mining LLC North America’s largest sapphire producer based in Montana.  The Rock Creek Sapphire mine produces a magnificent variety of fine pastel coloured sapphires of all sizes from 0.25 carat to 4  The Rock Creek Sapphire mine produces a magnificent variety of fine pastel coloured sapphires of all sizes from 0.25 carat to 40 carats.
Founding director Algonquian Diamond Counsellors International (ADCi) a rough diamond valuation and consulting firm formed as a partnership between R. T. Boyd Limited and Diamond Counsellors International (DCi).  DCi currently is involved in the Government Diamond Valuation for five governments in Africa.
ADCi's mandate is to acquire government and industry valuation contracts in Canada and elsewhere. DCi currently hold 4 African Government Diamond Valuation contracts.
Board of Directors and formerly the Ambassador to Canada for International Colored Gemstone Association.
Formerly a Director of Cancana Resources Corp (TSXV:CNY) a public company that was exploring for manganese, gold, and diamond deposits in Brazil.

President of R. T. Boyd Limited a privately owned company marketing coloured gemstones and diamonds in North America since 1956.
Formerly a team member of Diamonds International Canada (DICAN) Ltd. who are contracted Canadian Government Diamond Valuators valuing the rough diamond production from Canada's diamond mines. Instrumental in the formation of Aboriginal Diamonds Group Ltd, and DICAN and the implementation and administration of the strategic alliance between both organization
Previously a Director of WWW International Diamond Consultants (WWW).  WWW offers specialized advisory services to corporations and governments throughout the world on diamond related matters.  Have attended rough diamond tenders in Antwerp marketing the rough diamond production from African rough diamond producers.

Past President of the Canadian Gemmological Association during the time of the development of the Canadian Gemmology courses.

 Mike Botha
An internationally acclaimed master diamond cutter with 47 years of experience in the profession, Mike has worked in South Africa, Russia, and in Canada (Vancouver, Yellowknife andMike Prince Albert) on some of the world’s largest diamonds.
He worked as the occupational certification officer for the diamond industry in the Northwest Territories under the Department of Education, Culture and Employment, as well as the technical consultant for the Department of Industry, Tourism, and Investment. He was the chief instructor at Aurora College in Yellowknife for their diamond polishing program, which earned the college the Yves Landry award for educational innovation in 2004.
Other achievements:
       At the age of 28 he was one of the historic team of diamond cutters and polishers who worked on the Premier Rose Collection.
  His in depth knowledge of diamond crystallography has enabled him to do training workshops in various locations including the U of A in Edmonton for Dr. Thomas Stachel’s department.
       He developed a system of trigonometric profiling of fancy shaped diamonds resulting in perfectly shaped diamonds.
   He was the technical lead on the Diamond Standards and Certification development initiative for the Government of the Northwest Territories.
       He developed a number patented diamond shapes.
       As a 3D modeler, he designs diamonds with superior light performance than the current round brilliant paradigm.
       Mike has rare perspective, craftsmanship, leadership, and entrepreneurial enthusiasm. His lifetime experience and in-depth knowledge of diamond cutting, polishing, and diamond crystallography enabled him to develop the acclaimed Sirius Star®…the world’s brightest diamond® range of diamonds shapes.
       Mike has been a speaker on Light Performance and Facet Definition of Diamonds at jewellery shows and other events in Japan, Korea and Namibia as well as at various locations across North America. He has also done workshops and training at several North American events.
       He recently cut the Esperanza diamond which was discovered in the Arkansas Crater of Diamond State Park. To date, this is the most valuable diamond ever discovered in the USA.

Ari Goosen

ari 3006
Since he was 18, Ari has been intrenched into a very rare and unique side of the gem and jewellery industry.  Ari’s older brother is the acclaimed 3rd generation jewellery dealer; Lee Siegelson.  Siegelson is the worlds foremost authority on museum quality gems and jewels.  Often first call for most museums looking to put on an exhibition, the Siegelson collection is truly the only place in the world for collectors to purchase pieces straight from museum collections.  As the only GIA graduate gemologist to have truly unlimited access to these famous masterpieces, Ari has unquestionably had more time studying these pieces then any other GG…   In particular, the famed golconda diamonds the have graced the siegelson collection. 

With a front row seat in the worlds most elite diamond and jewellery market, Ari quickly learned all the intricacies of this incredibly specialized business from the cutting floor to the sales floor, he had the unique privilege of experiencing it all…. And with goods most people only dream of. 

With a long corresponding history in speciality retail management and business building, his experience allowed him to develop and deliver sales programs and events for retailers looking to target clients of this caliber such as Birks & Mayors, Neiman Marcus, Saks and Bergdorf Goodman. 

In 2010,after getting married to local olympian and Richmond city councillor, Alexa Loo;  Ari re-located to Vancouver BC and decided to start his own business.

Focused on luxury education and business development Ari has started Ari Goosen Consulting Group (AGCG) to facilitate independent luxury business’s operations and goals.  Some of clients include: John Rubel (the famed jeweller who was responsible for VCA’s original masterpieces…. Think Ballerinas”.  Ari acted as a coach, adviser and facilitator to Rubel through their global re-launch.  Now, John Rubel is one of the most sought after jewellery brands in the world.  AGCG also provides independent and unbiased brokerage services to those looking to expand or contract their collections of unique luxury products.  

Ari is also the founder and CEO of The Vault Luxury Promotions Inc., an event production company specializing in presenting unique and specialty luxury brands.  Our famed signature event  “The Vault in the Garden” at Luxury Supercar weekend 2015 featured over $100 million worth of one of a kind gems and jewels offered for sale in the middle of Vancouver’s beautiful Van Dusen Garden.  Featuring dealers and designers from all over the world, the Vault in the Garden is the first and only event of its kind in Canada where collectors can meet the actual owners and designers of the worlds treasures (new and old) and purchase them directly onsite.  With the help of onsite independent gemologists, appraisers and even insurance underwriters; collectors could confidently put the item on, pay for it and walk right back into Luxury & Supercar weekend…  With the piece fully insured instantly.  This service is a global first at any event of this type.