News & Press: American Gem Society News

Remembering James Caudill

Tuesday, November 29, 2016   (0 Comments)
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By Donna Jolly, RJ, Director of Marketing,
American Gem Society and AGS Laboratories

Jimmy CaudillOn October 15, James Caudill, former Director of the Advanced Instruments Division of the American Gem Society, passed away. "Jim" or "Jimmy" as he was known to his many friends, was a valued friend of the Society, having served in a variety of roles at AGS from 2000 to 2013.

Jimmy was a key member of the research and development team that created the groundbreaking AGS Light Performance Cut Grade System. He was instrumental in the development of the Society's Advanced Instruments Division, and, in particular, the ASET®, that so many of our members use and rely on at the sales counter.

He was proud of his contribution to the creation and implementation of the ASET. Never in my career have I been able to make anyone so happy with these words, "Hey, I want to talk to you about the best way to promote this." Jimmy could—and would—talk for hours about the ASET and the AGS Cut Grade. Often, I'd have what I thought would be a simple question, such as "Hey Jimmy, what's the blue in this ASET image mean?" Jimmy would get a smile on his face, and a sparkle in his eyes that could not be extinguished. He discussed the ASET with vigor and an unapologetic passion.

"Jimmy was loved by all who knew him and will be greatly missed," said Jason Quick, AGS Laboratories Director. "I had the wonderful experience of working with Jimmy for many years and every day he would say or do something to put a smile on my face.  He was the 'mad scientist' of the cut grade project and brought a contagious rock-n-roll intensity to the team."

When Jimmy passed away, Ruth Batson, our CEO, wrote this: "What Jimmy will be most remembered for was his passionate love of life and the laughter and joy he brought to work each day. He loved what he did and it showed."

Jimmy was many things to those of us who worked with him: colleague, talented bass player and drummer, Rush fan, mad scientist, gem nerd, innovator, photographer and a funny guy with the biggest heart and the kindest smile you've ever seen. He was liked by everyone who knew him, whether it was his co-workers or industry peers. Jimmy, like the ASET, was one of a kind.

Jimmy, our friend, you are missed and will never be forgotten. Rest in peace.


Mission Statement

The American Gem Society (AGS) is a nonprofit trade association of fine jewelry professionals dedicated to setting, maintaining and promoting the highest standards of ethical conduct and professional behavior through education, accreditation, recertification of its membership, gemological standards, and gemological research.

The Society is committed to providing educational products to inform and protect the consumer and to contributing to the betterment of the trade by creating industry standards to protect the jewelry-buying public and the fine jewelry industry as a whole.

AGS Laboratories, founded to support the AGS mission, is a nonprofit diamond grading laboratory with a mission of consumer protection. Adhering to the AGS Diamond Grading Standards, AGS Laboratories is dedicated to offering diamond grading reports that provide consistency and accuracy based on science.

American Gem Society