From Mine to Mounting, an Arkansas Diamond Matures in the USA

Las Vegas, NV (August 27, 2015) – From mine to mounting, the unique 8.52 carat diamond, one of the most significant finds ever in the history of the Arkansas Crater of Diamonds State Park,will be appraised, cut, graded, designed and made into a piece of fine jewelry, all in North America, all by American Gem Society (AGS) members.  Once crafted into a one-of-a-kind wearable piece of fine jewelry, the diamond will be sold at auction in December.

Since its formation in the layers of the earth’s crust, the diamond, named “Esperanza,” has been, and continues to be, native to America.  The Arkansas Crater of Diamonds State Park is one of only four known olivine lamproite diamond mines in the world and the only active diamond mine in the United States.  June 24th proved to be a historically significant day for the state park and a personally lucky day for Colorado native and non-profit office worker, Ms. B. Oskarson, who literally unearthed a brilliant 8.52 carat rough diamond while visiting the park with her boyfriend.  Hers to keep, the stone traveled with Ms. Oskarson home to Colorado where she named this significant find the “Esperanza” diamond (Spanish for ‘Hope’) after her beloved niece.  Unfamiliar with the diamond world, Ms. Oskarson researched acclaimed appraisers and contacted well-known jewelry appraiser Neil Beaty, an Independent Certified Gemologist Appraiser (ICGA) and AGS member residing in nearby Denver, seeking his expertise for an appraisal.  As an AGS member, Beaty is held to the highest ethical and professional standards in the industry, which gave Ms. Oskarson great confidence when Beaty confirmed the significance and value of the large, rough stone. Beaty quickly sent the stone to AGS Laboratories to be scanned and analyzed.

In September, the Esperanza diamond will be cut by Master Diamond Cutter and AGS member, Mike Botha of Embee Diamond Technologies, at a special cutting and unveiling held in-store at AGS member retailer, Stanley Jewelers Gemologist, all week from 10am to 5pm on September 9th – 12 th, 2015 in North Little Rock, Arkansas.  Upon completion of cutting and polishing, the diamond will travel to AGS Laboratories for the final diamond grading report.  The stone is anticipated to become a one-of-a-kind, custom designed triolette shape measuring roughly 5 carats after cutting.  A 3D digital model of the stone cutting will be forwarded in advance to the award-winning jewelry designer, Erica Courtney, for design inspiration and preparation. 

Ms. Courtney, another prominent AGS member, will design a one-of-a-kind mounting for the stone and craft a unique necklace featuring the large Esperanza diamond which will be sold at auction.

The future owner of the Esperanza necklace will have one of the largest and most significant, uniquely American jewels in history. From appraisal to inspection, from cutting to jewelry crafting, AGS members will be involved at every step in the process to ensure the highest quality product.  

“We are thrilled to be a part of such an important and historical diamond find in America,” says Ruth Batson, CEO of the American Gem Society and AGS Laboratories.  “With so many AGS members involved, at every step in the process, this is certain to become an American heirloom jewel that the ultimate owner/wearer will enjoy with confidence.”

To learn more about the diamond, visit:

For more information regarding the American Gem Society or AGS Laboratories, please call 866.805.6500, or visit



The American Gem Society, founded in 1934 by Robert M. Shipley, is a not-for-profit trade association dedicated to proven ethics, knowledge, and consumer protection within the jewelry industry. The American Gem Society is a professional organization awarding credentials for its members, who are held to the highest ethical and professional standards in the industry and must pass annual recertification examinations to maintain their titles. Less than one in twenty jewelers in the country have met the exacting requirements necessary for membership. 


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Donna Jolly
Director of Marketing
American Gem Society & AGS Laboratories

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