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Thursday, January 12, 2012

Longtime Jewelers of America CEO to Resign

Matthew A. Runci, president and CEO of Jewelers of America, announced Thursday that he is retiring from the national trade association for businesses serving the fine jewelry retail marketplace after 17 years at the helm. His resignation becomes effective at the end of the year.

“Matt’s contribution to Jewelers of America and its industry leadership role, both nationally and internationally, is immeasurable. In addition to strengthening good governance practices at JA and developing an active and dedicated board of directors, he was instrumental in the formation of the Responsible Jewellery Council and has been involved from the start with the Kimberley Process,” Georgie Gleim, JA board chair, said in a statement. “Our industry owes him a debt of gratitude. His dedication to JA has ensured that a transition to new leadership will be a smooth process, positioning the organization for its future.”

Runci informed the association’s executive committee of his decision on January 6. JA has asked Runci to remain during a transition period and to continue to assist the association with its work in the area of responsible business practices in 2013.

A search committee has been appointed that will commence work shortly, JA said. The association actually began formal succession planning in 2009.

Runci joined JA as President & CEO in 1995. He had previously served as CEO of Manufacturing Jewelers & Suppliers of America, where he held several positions over a 16-year period. Prior to that, he taught international politics, law and foreign policy at the university level.

He holds a PhD in Foreign Affairs from the University of Virginia and a BA in History from Boston College. He is a member of Phi Beta Kappa, the 24 Karat Club of New York City and is a past president of the Boston Jewelers Club.

Runci and his wife, Laraine, reside in Connecticut. They have two children and six grandchildren.

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