Events & Awards

And the 2024 Winner of the Shipley Award Is …

Events & AwardsApr 17, 2024

And the 2024 Winner of the Shipley Award Is …

John Carter received the AGS’s highest honor Tuesday afternoon at Conclave in Austin, Texas.

John Carter, 2024 Shipley Award winner
John Carter, owner of Jack Lewis Jewelers, was announced as the 2024 winner of the Robert M. Shipley Award at the annual Shipley Award luncheon, held Tuesday at AGS Conclave in Austin, Texas.
Austin, Texas—The American Gem Society handed out its highest honor Tuesday afternoon to a man described as a “modern Mr. AGS” and a “bridge builder”—John Carter, owner of Jack Lewis Jewelers in Bloomington, Illinois. 

Carter received the Robert M. Shipley Award from past winner and longtime AGS jeweler Clayton Bromberg, who detailed his journey in the industry. 

Carter first started working at Jack Lewis Jewelers when he was a junior in high school. 

After graduating from Illinois State University in 1998, he spent some time on the road as a salesman for watch brand Maurice Lacroix before returning to Jack Lewis Jewelers in the early 2000s. 

He bought the business in 2011 and, according to Bromberg, “He understood the value of being involved in the jewelry industry and how it can affect his retail operation. To the American Gem Society’s benefit, one of the places he landed as a volunteer was on the board of the American Gem Society in 2012.

“Most of y’all in the audience, like me, got to know him better in 2013 when he became the chair of the Conclave committee and I can tell you, he transformed the American Gem Society’s Conclave to the Conclave we enjoy today.” 

In 2018, Carter became AGS president. 

In that role, Bromberg said he fostered and furthered the organization’s relationship with GIA, helped found the Beatrice Shipley Scholarship, and traveled extensively on behalf of AGS to further its mission and ideals, landing him the moniker of “modern Mr. AGS.” 

He is an AGS Certified Gemologist Appraiser (CGA) and holds a Graduate Gemologist (GG) diploma from GIA. 
“John Carter has made a lasting impact on the American Gem Society because of his commitment to professional excellence, education, innovation and custom and community service,” Bromberg concluded. 

A visibly emotional Carter, who received two standing ovations, noted that he was particularly honored to receive the Shipley award in 2024, as the organization celebrates its 90th anniversary, and in front of the “Mount Rushmore” of his mentors and idols. 

“This award goes to somebody for service to this society, and I kind of feel a little bit like a robber up here today, because this has never felt like service to me. To me, it’s always just been being with my friends and learning from you and taking so much from you that I take back to my business. 

“And I hope to make it better, and I hope to make me better.” 

 Related stories will be right here … 

Prior to the reveal of the Shipley Award winner, AGS spotlighted two previously announced scholarship recipients—Amber Rank, who received the Women in Leadership Scholarship, and Linette Angulo of Pompos Jewelry in Los Angeles, the 2024 recipient of the Beatrice Shipley Scholarship. 

Named in honor of the AGS and GIA co-founder, and first presented in 2019, the Beatrice Shipley scholarship covers the full cost of earning a GG diploma from GIA and the title of CGA from AGS. 

Angulo is a Southern California native who grew up accompanying her father to work at his business, Pompos Jewelry. 

There, she witnessed the “magic” her father and her brothers created with their hands.

After graduating from high school last June, Angulo joined the family business full time. 

AGS Conclave 2024 concludes today in Austin, Texas. 

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