I have been accused, more than once, of selling topaz from other locations, and representing it as from Mason County. This has happened a number of times, and has been reported to me by customers and friends, and this time, on Texas Topaz Day, when it happened again, the lie and attempt to steal my customer was witnessed by a family member. The saddest thing is that several times this has come from next door.
The person that was told I sell Brazilian topaz as local topaz is a repeat customer. This was the second year in a row that this family, four adult members, plus friends, drove from Houston to celebrate this event. They tell their friends how much fun they had in Mason during Topaz Day, and they want to bring more friends next year. They spend the night here, go to Sandstone Cellars wine bar and Willowcreek.
I entered the fine jewelry industry in the World Trade Center in Dallas in 1984. I earned my Graduate Gemologist degree in 1998. My work experience includes wholesale and retail fine jewelry, from mom and pop stores to corporate jewelry. I have been or am currently a member of the Gemological Institute of America Alumni Association, the National Association of Jewelry Appraisers, the American Gem Trade Association, the World Gem Society, Texas Jewelers Association, and the Texas Faceters’ Guild. All of these organizations require ethical behavior as a member.
As much as I love the jewelry, my reputation is more important to me than the gems. I am known in the jewelry industry as an honest and ethical professional. Outside this town, my reputation is sterling, and I do not deserve the treatment I have received from other topaz cutters and retailers in this town. For six years I have brought gem lovers and professionals from around the country to Mason for a weekend of fun and education. My friends, colleagues, and customers have spent significant money in the town each year, and in return I have been vilified by some in this town. These expressions of jealousy are petty and unacceptable.
Texas Faceters’ Guild is a co-sponsor of Texas Topaz Day, and has moved their annual seminar to Mason. The guild wants to keep their events here, but is appalled by the behavior of some members of this community. Time will tell if the guild chooses to continue to hold their event here in Mason. If they and I move Texas Topaz Day, it will be because of the slanderous and destructive behavior of a few mean spirited competitors in this town.
B. Diane Eames, GG
Graduate Gemologist (GIA)