Conference 2018 Speakers

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Celebrate our 60th year as a Canadian Association!

Speakers are all confirmed and we will be udating soon so stay tuned for exciting announcements:

Mr.Dominic Mok
Lee A. Groat
Jon Phillips
Alan Hodgkinson
Dr. Cigdem Lule
Art Samuels
Stuart Robertson
Kellly Ross
Mike Botha

Mr. Dominic Mok
Mok  photo - Mok V2 low res Mr. Dominic Mok, the founder and Principal of the Asian Gemmological Institute & Laboratory Limited (AGIL), has 40 years of experience in the jewellery trade and is both a professional geologist and accredited expert gemmologist. Mr. Mok espouses “Integrity” as AGIL’ s mission from the beginning and he strictly adheres to the ethical principle of not being involved in jewellery trading. He utilizes advanced, high-tech instruments in his gem testing and annual jewellery audit appraisal services. All clients’ relevant information is kept strictly confidential.

Mr. Mok and his team members have accomplished a number of “first” in gem testing in Hong Kong. In the spring of 1993, AGIL issued the first ever Jadeite Testing Report in Hong Kong using an Infrared Spectrometer. Mr. Mok has always devoted himself to raising the bar in Hong Kong gem testing standard. He has conducted research on Fei Cui, diamonds and rubies, and published his research articles in different media. In January 2005, Mr. Mok led AGIL to further professional recognition. AGIL was the first gemological laboratory in Hong Kong granted HOKLAS ISO/IEC 17025 authorised qualification for Fei Cui Jadeite Jade testing. The qualification accredited by the Hong Kong Accreditation Service (HKAS) of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government.

AGIL has been teaching FGA courses since 1983 and it is one of the earliest registered Accredited Teaching Centre (ATC) of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain (Gem-A). AGIL is authorized to teach FGA/DGA gemmology courses in Chinese and English. AGIL’s graduates were granted four times World           No.l “Best Candidate” of FGA/DGA exams. In 2009, sponsored by Dominic Mok,   Gem-A established a new worldwide examination honour, “The Mok Diamond Practical Prize’.

In 2016, Mr. Mok was appointed as the Honorary Assistant Professor of Earth Science department of the University of Hong Kong.

Alan Hodgkinson

President of the Scottish Gemmological Association, Freeman of the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths, Honorary Member of the Canadian Gemmological, Honorary Registered Valuer.

Lifetime awards by AGA, AGTA, Gem-A and SGA, Author of Visual Optics, Author of Gem Testing Techniques and Originator of the synthetic emerald filter and the stained green jadeite filter.

Lee A. Groat
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Lee Groat graduated from Queen's University with a B.Sc.
(Honours, Geology) in 1982 and from the University of Manitoba with a Ph.D. in 1988.  From 1988 to 1989 he was a NATO Postdoctoral Fellow at Cambridge University.

Professor Groat has been a faculty member at the University of British Columbia since 1989.  His main research interests are the geology of gem deposits, pegmatites, the crystal chemistry of minerals, and economic geology.  He has published more than 125 papers in peer-reviewed scientific journals.

From 2001 to 2006 Dr. Groat was Editor of American Mineralogist.  He is the former Co-Editor (2012) and present Editor (2013-present) of The Canadian Mineralogist.

In 2003 Dr. Groat was elected a Fellow of the Mineralogical Society of America, and in 2009 the new mineral groatite, NaCaMn2+2(PO4)[PO3(OH)]2, was named in his honor.

Professor Groat is an Independent Director of multiple companies in the exploration and technology spheres and a partner in a private consulting company.

Jon Phillips


Jon has been in the jewellery business for over 35 years and worked in all of its “facets”. He is currently the Divisional Manager for Canadian Diamonds at Corona Jewellery Company Ltd. in Toronto, Canada. Part of Jon’s responsibilities includes managing the rough to polish systems for Canadian Diamonds including purchasing of the rough directly from mining companies to working with diamond polishing factories to produce the final product.

Jon is also the lead instructor for Corona and travels worldwide to promote Canadian diamonds and gold. He is Corona’s first contact for anti-money laundering (AML) and Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) compliances.

He has worked for BHP Billiton Diamonds as a Marketing Manager in both Vancouver and Antwerp and as a service Manager for Birks in Vancouver. Jon and his wife Carol ran their own custom jewellery business in Vancouver for fifteen years which is where Jon obtained his training as a journeyman goldsmith.

Jon is a Certified Gemologist (CG) from the American Gem Society (AGS) and a Graduate Gemologist (GG) from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA).  

Jon also currently sits as the chairman of the Accreditation and Certification committee of the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) and is a past member of the Standards Committee.  Jon is a member of the GIA Alumni Advisory Council and past vice-president of the diamond commission for CIBJO. He currently sits on the boards of the Canadian Jewellers Association (CJA) and Canadian Diamond Code of Conduct Committee (CDCC).

Çidem Lüle, PhD, FGA, GIA GG , DGA

Dr. Lüle is a mineralogist, an award winning gemologist and the owner of Kybele LLC consulting firm C. LuleFLO 4494 based in Illinois, USA. As an independent researcher, she has dedicated a large part of her career to archaeogemology; the identification of gem findings from archaeological sites, with an emphasis on origin investigation. Her consultation services also include developing tailored edu- cation for the gem professionals, appraisers, gemologists and gemology students. She special- izes in mineral appraisals.

Professional Education
BSc. In Geo Engineering, Ankara University, Turkey, 1995
Diploma in Gemmology from Gemmological Association of Great Britain (FGA), 1998 Diamond Diploma from Gemmological Association of Great Britain (DGA), 1998
MSc. in Mineralogy, Ankara University, Turkey, 1999
Graduate Gemologist, Gemological Institute of America (GIA), 2005
PhD. in Mineralogy, Hacettepe University, Turkey, 2006

Industry Affiliations
  • Member of The Scottish Gemmological Association (SGA), 2008–present
    Accredited Senior Gemologist member of Accredited Gemologists Association (AGA), 2011–present 
  • Member of Mineralogical Society of America, 2011-present
  • Member of National Association of Jewelry Appraisers 2018
  • Employment, Industry Service and Recognition 
  • Research Assistant at Mineralogy Department, Ankara University, Turkey, 1999-2002
  • Staff Gemologist and Sales Assistant at R. Holt and Co., London, UK, 2002-2004
  • Gemology Instructor at GIA London Campus, London, UK, 2004-2010
  • Director of Development Gemworld International, 2011- 2017.
  • Contributing editor to the GemGuide and Gem Market News published by Gemworld International, 2011- present.
    Technical advisor the World of Color system published in 2014.
  • AwardedtheprestigiousAntonioC.BonannoExcellenceinGemologyAward,2016. 
  • Conference Co-Chair, World of Gems Conference V, 2017.

 Art Samuels
Art-Bio-Picture Art Samuels has had two full careers.  The first was on Active Duty in the U.S. Navy for 24 years where he was a Naval Flight Officer and an expert in Soviet Submarines. Art retired as a Commander where he switched from " Subs to Stones" and he is currently the founding Partner in 7 high end retail stores in South Florida, and Partner in 2 wholesale Gem & Jewelry companies ( Vivid Diamonds & Jewelry, 

            Art Samuels is an active buyer and seller of fine Gems and Jewelry, using his gemological skills to Treasure Hunt in the Estate Jewelry marketplace.  He is an outspoken proponent of change to improve our industry, and a speaker who freely shares his practical gem experiences and insights on making money.  Art is deeply involved on numerous boards of gemological and trade organizations such as the Accredited Gemologists Association (AGA) and the Diamond Bourse of the Southeast United States. 

Stuart Robertson

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Stuart Robertson, Graduate Gemologist (GIA)

Stuart Robertson is the Vice President and Research Director of Gemworld International, Inc., located in Glenview, Illinois, USA. He also serves as Gemstone Editor of the periodicals published under the company’s GemGuide and Gem Market News brands. In addition to Gemstone Editor, Stuart is an award-winning appraiser and gemologist; he is also the co-developer of the industry course, Corundum Treatments and Pricing.
Stuart is a recipient of the prestigious Antonio C. Bonanno Excellence in Gemology Award and the AIJV Valuer of the Year Award.

Kelly Ross
Ross Bio Image -22018
Kelly Ross is a security specialist and expert in the criminal use of diamonds gemstones
and precious metals. He 
worked in the RCMP as thier subject matter expert on diamond and jewellery based crimes, relating to fraud, theft, money laundering and counterfeiting. He has conducted investigation on a national and global scale and represented the RCMP to froeign police agencies and anit-money laundering agencies.  

He holds gemological designations from several schools including the Canadian Gemmological Association and completed a Maters of Arts degree researching the criminal use of diamonds and jewellery.

He currently works in security and fraud investigations in the financial sector and is regularly called on to assists Canadian and international law enforcement with training and investigations on diamond and jewellery related crimes.

Mike Botha
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An internationally acclaimed master diamond cutter with 48 years of experience in the profession, Mike has worked in South Africa, Russia, and in Canada (Vancouver, Yellowknife and 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.