Shining Stars 2019

2019 Shining Stars

Jodis Strother
WJA Austin

Jodis is always first to spring into action and get the job done. She’s excellent at finding the perfect venue for all our chapter events and always volunteers to show up early and stay late. Her dedication to the Austin Chapter shines bright through all the effort and work she puts into each event, making sure it’s executed perfectly for our members. We are so grateful to have Jodis on our board!

Marei Dose
WJA Boston

Marei has served the WJA Boston chapter as treasurer for the past 4 years! She is the longest board member. Her support, passion, dedication and effectiveness makes her being due as Shining Star!

Pam Robinson
WJA Chicago

Pam has been an integral member of WJA Chicago since day one. She enthusiastically volunteers to take on new responsibilities, agreeing to become our Membership VP last year and playing a key role in numerous events. Her experience as an educator and leader in the jewelry industry has influenced our board and chapter in so many meaningful ways. We are so fortunate to have her and we are grateful for all of her contributions!!

Donna Russell
WJA Colorado

Donna has been an active and enthusiastic WJA member since the chapter's inception. Donna is a shining example of someone who believes in and lives the WJA mission of seeing women professionally develop and advance in the jewelry and watch industries. She serves as both a role model and an inspiration in her continued professional pursuits. We're proud to be able to count Donna as one of our members.

Robert Gessner
WJA Dallas

Upon moving to Dallas and joining the WJA Dallas Chapter, Robert took a step forward right from the get-go.  Inviting us into his premier work environment, offering his gemstone expertise, introducing us to new prospective members, and collaborating with other industry related events via his role as North Texas GIA Alumni President, are among the many reasons we are honoring Robert Gessner as the Dallas Chapter Shining Star.  Thank you for being a great example in serving our jewelry community.

Tanya Parikh
WJA Los Angeles

Tanya has been voted as our 2019 Shining Star because she has shown endless dedication and support (over 7 years!) to the Los Angeles Chapter. She brings so much vivacity to the chapter with her fresh new takes and ideas.  She truly is a role model.  

Allyson Bainbridge Riccardi
WJA New York Metro

Allyson heads up the Bambolina agency in New York City. She develops brands, content, and strategies for marketing and visual success, talents that she generously shares as an active and seasoned board member in the New York Metro chapter. She handles chapter communications by designing email correspondence, the newsletter, and otherwise elevating how Metro engages with members in written and digital communications. She selflessly volunteers her time, creativity, and exceptional design skills, and is ever present at meetings and events. Plus, her thoughtful feedback—it was Allyson’s to have a design contest at Jewelry Night Out 2019—helps Metro create meaningful events that bring value to members year round.

Prerna Sethi
WJA Northern California

Prerna is a leader of leaders. She is the embodiment of Newton's quote: If I have seen further than others, it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants. When our Bay Area community shines brighter, grows stronger and sees further, it is due to the depth of heart and spirited leadership that has emboldened us. Thank you, Prerna! You are truly a Shining Star.

Lauren Duff Major
WJA Ohio/Kentucky

With gratitude the OH/KY Chapter thanks Lauren for all her volunteer hours, dedication to detail on this major event of the Smithsonian trip to DC, and we are proud to have Lauren Duff-Major as our Ohio/Kentucky Chapter's Shining Star.

Christine McDermott
WJA Providence

Christine may use #hotmessmom; however, our chapter would disagree. She was nominated to be our 2019 Shining Star Award recipient for her great organizational skills, keeping our members informed of all our events and happenings and does it with enthusiasm and attention to detail.  And even though she runs around town with #soccermom duties, she is one of the first to pitch in and help where needed in a continuous effort to keep our chapter running smoothly.  

Ginger Meek Allen
WJA Raleigh

We chose Ginger as our Shining Star because she was our MVP this year. When we needed help with marketing, Ginger not only was the first to volunteer, but she did a fantastic job with our banners, signs, and print materials. In addition, Ginger helped keep us on task and organized, at a time when many of us were very busy with other life events. Basically, Ginger was willing to jump in wherever there was a need and inspired others with her enthusiasm. We were honored to be able to nominate her for the Shining Star award this year.

Jennifer DeMoro
WJA San Diego

Jennifer is dependable, efficient, and always willing to take on challenges and see them to successful completion. She always projects a warm, cheerful attitude towards our members and always lifts the spirits of those around her. I believe these characteristics represent all that is good in our Chapter and I am pleased she is this year’s San Diego Shining Star!

Gina Hawkins
WJA Seattle

Gina is a longtime valued member of WJA Seattle and deserves recognition for her many contributions. As WJA Seattle President her ideas, flexibility, communication and leadership skills were  important to the success of our chapter through engaging, fun events and guidance to the Seattle chapter board. She continues to go “above and beyond” by serving not only as our Past President but also as our co-chair Partnership VP. Gina’s leadership qualities and positive personality display her commitment to the continued growth and success of WJA Seattle. We are so lucky to have her as a member of our chapter!

Dana Winden
WJA Twin Cities

From Dana's first Board meeting, she has always offered her help.  She offers her help at meeting, events and socials.  We have had some position adjustments that needed to be addressed quickly and she happily volunteered to take on the new role.  We can always count on Dana.