Glenn Nord (1928–2019)
Glenn Nord was captivated by gems since childhood, and this formed the foundation of his education and career. This fascination long benefited GIA, which flourished thanks to the accomplishments of this self-described “GIA man.” His work, first as an instructor, then as president, and finally as a member of the Board of Governors, secured the Institute’s place as the world leader in gemological education and research.
After completing military service, Nord enrolled at GIA using his GI Bill benefits, earning his Graduate Gemologist (GG) diploma in 1959. He was invited by then-president Richard Liddicoat to join the faculty in 1961. He became a tireless advocate for GIA’s traveling classes, introducing the Institute’s first corporate training courses with the Zale Corp. in the 1960s. In 1970, Nord taught GIA’s first international gemology courses, in Ramat Gan, Israel. He resigned in 1974 for health-related reasons, but returned nine years later to serve as GIA president.
Nord’s term as president (1983–1986) restored financial stability in the wake of a global recession. It also brought an era of increased student enrollment, revitalized curriculum, and expanded global development. His lasting contributions to the Institute include the establishment of student financial aid services and the founding of the highly successful Gemfest, free educational seminars now held regularly in Asia and Europe.
A longtime member of the Board of Governors, Nord was named Governor Emeritus, and received the Richard T. Liddicoat Distinguished Achievement Award, the Institute’s highest honor. More than five decades after his graduation, GIA and the public it serves continue to reap the benefits of Glenn Nord’s leadership and dedication.
Glenn Nord passed away on June 9, 2019.