New leadership for the Responsible Jewellery Council

New leadership for the Responsible Jewellery Council - Artificial Jewellery

After a tumultuous 12 months the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) has appointed a new executive director, journalist and writer Melanie Grant.

2022 was a year to forget for the RJC, enduring extensive internal turmoil following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February.

Executive director Iris Van der Veken resigned shortly after the conflict began, with debate over the membership of Russian mining juggernaut Alrosa reportedly causing division.

RJC chairman John Hall was appointed interim executive director in April following the resignation, with Hall now replaced by Grant.

Grant has worked as a journalist for more than two decades, writing at London-based newspapers The Times, the Financial Times, The Independent and The Guardian.

Grant is also the author of Coveted: Art and Innovation in High Jewelry which was published in 2020. In a statement, she said ‘sustainability’ would be a key focus during her tenure as executive director.

“Sustainability is the greatest single issue facing watches and jewellery today, and I want to help everyone understand what they can do to be part of this movement,” she said. “I feel privileged to have been selected for this monumental task.”

Chairman of the RJC David Bouffard said it was an appointment that would take the organisation into a ‘new era’.

“She has a deep love and knowledge of jewellery and watches and a uniquely creative skillset which is both industry and consumer-facing,” he said.

“I believe she will successfully take the RJC into a new era as we continue to deliver on our mission of continuous improvement in the integrity of the global jewellery and watch supply chain.”

In April the RJC came under fire when Jeweller reported on discrepancies with the organisation’s membership base and issues relating to corporate transparency.

According to the RJC’s website the organisation has 1,700 members in 71 countries as of January 2023. 

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