Jewelers of America Board Chair Bill Farmer Jr. received a special honor from the American Gem Society. At the AGS Conclave in New Orleans on April 24, AGS honored him with its highest honor, the Robert M. Shipley Award, which is presented annually to a retailer for their contributions to the jewelry industry and their local community.
During his acceptance speech, Farmer discussed the special role jewelers serve in people's ever-changing lives: “As the world stands today, we are in unique position. The kids may sell the car, may sell the house, may sell all the furniture, all the silver. They are going to keep the jewelry. They are going to want more like it. That is where we come in every day. We are the trusted advisor.”
AGS CEO Ruth Batson (pictured with Bill below) says, “He has demonstrated his dedication to the ethical standards of the AGS through his professional career and his volunteer service."
Bill is second-generation partner of Farmer's Jewelry in Lexington, KY, along with his mother, Jean, and sister, Kristi Farmer Lykins. His father, Bill Farmer Sr., opened the business in 1950, and his legacy lives on through his family's commitment to the jewelry community.
Bill is a constant support to the industry. He has served Jewelers of America with 10 years on Jewelers of America's Board of Directors. During that time, he helped raise awareness of Jewelers of America's Political Action Committee, serving on and chairing the JAPAC Board. Bill served two terms as President of the Kentucky Jewelers Association and was Board Chair of the American Gem Society from 2002-2004. Bill was also inducted in the National Jeweler's Retailer Hall of Fame in 1993.
He also has been involved in the AGS Young Titleholders Committee, served as chair of the AGS Conclave Committee and as chair of the AGS membership committee.