Meet a CIA™ Graduate
From Sawmill Operator
to Certified Insurance Appraiser
It's not every day that someone makes a huge career change like going from running a logging company to managing a successful jewelry enterprise. But Carl Saenger, owner of American Jewelry Co. in Bakersfield, CA did — making the transition from the magnificence of the Colorado Rocky Mountains to the magnified world of precious gems and fine jewelry.
American Jewelry was founded in 1898 and has been a family-owned business since 1947. The company is one of the larger independent jewelers in the region, offering fine jewelry, designer collections, watches, and custom manufacturing using high-tech computer-assisted equipment.
Carl left his Steamboat Springs logging operation in 1975. Joining the family jewelry company, he quickly immersed himself in education and professional training. In 1976 he began GIA coursework via correspondence. A few years later he became a Certified Gemologist and a Certified Gemologist Appraiser. Carl says that his involvement with GIA was initially for the education, but later for the professional credibility and competitive advantage the designation provides. That was also his motivation for taking his professional education to the next level with JCRS' Certified Insurance Appraiser™ program.
Carl says of the Certified Insurance Appraiser™ program , "It was not just another appraisal course, but was geared to the insurance industry and what they need." Carl notes that jewelry appraisals aim at reproducing a piece of jewelry from a detailed description that can be systematically described, quantified, and included in a standardized form.
Has Carl actually benefited from the training? He believes so. "The specialized training of the Certified Insurance Appraiser™ program gave me insight into the different insurance, customer, and jewelry perspectives," he says. Carl is one of two Certified Insurance Appraisers™ in the Bakersfield area and more actively promotes his additional qualifications because it enhances his business. He says that his business includes a number of large, long-term accounts who value the consultative advice he is able to provide. In addition, he has developed a rapport with a number of insurance agents.
Carl's CIA™ training has equipped him touse the insurance industry’s JISO (formerly ACORD) forms, available online, to accurately describe jewelry items for insurance
purposes. In addition, he notes, "The form presents a nice, clean, and
concise document" that customers appreciate. Because the Certified Insurance
Appraiser™ program broadens a jeweler's knowledge base, Carl believes
the course "will eventually become required" for jewelers who want
to be regarded seriously. Put simply, Carl says, "The Certified Insurance
Appraiser™ program rounds you out. It upgrades your level of professionalism."