Cerrone honoured with Order of Australia

Owner and founder of the House of Cerrone, jeweller Nicola Cerrone, has been presented with an Order of Australia.

He was awarded the honour by Governor General David Hurley in a ceremony on 18 April, acknowledged for his contribution to Australia’s arts, manufacturing and business sectors.

Cerrone told Jeweller he was thrilled to see the industry well-recognised and placed in the national spotlight. 

“Going to Government House was a wonderful experience, they did a great job of illustrating what each recipient has achieved – it’s not just a matter of getting your medal and saying goodbye,” he said.

“There were people from all walks of life present and it was a great celebration of some tremendous achievements.”

Cerrone migrated to Australia in the 1960s from Italy and after completing a jewellery apprenticeship, founded his business with his wife Carmela Cerrone in 1972. 

Based in Sydney, Cerrone oversees Australia’s largest handmade jewellery workshop and focuses on ‘paying it forward’ by fostering the next generation of craftsmen with expansive apprenticeship programs.

He said promoting and elevating young jewellers was his highest priority.

“We’ve been focusing on working closely with apprentices for the past five or six years, and I think it’s the most important thing for the industry to focus on moving forward,” Cerrone said.

“We have around eight apprentices at the moment, and often they start in jewellery as a bit of a ‘hobby’ but quickly they want to become the very best in the field and that’s the secret to success.” 

He added: “When there’s competition in business, we see people pushing boundaries and raising the standard. When these young people go off and start their own businesses, that’s brilliant for the future of the industry.”

He compared competition in jewellery to competition in music and sport, saying that the desire to be the best created incredible art and iconic performances.

Master jewellers are notoriously private people and Cerrone said he was pleased to see attitudes changing toward those eager to learn.

“It’s funny to think about to my masters, the people who taught me. Many of them would say ‘work it out yourself’ or ‘if I teach you, you’ll never learn’,” Cerrone jokes.

“These days many people are eager to pass on what they’ve learned which is fantastic. Fortunately, we’ve also got the internet too, and these young apprentices can head align to learn more.”

He added: “These young apprentices are the future voices of the industry and I’m very happy to see the government prioritising apprenticeship programs.”

Cerrone’s Order of Australia is the latest in a distinguished career, including winning the De Beers Diamond International Award in 1998 and receiving the Key to the City (il Frentano d’Oro) in his hometown of Lanciano Abruzzo to celebrate his accomplishments in Australia.


Cerrone honoured with Order of Australia - Artificial Jewellery


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