KANSAS CITY, Mo.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Helzberg Diamonds, one of the jewelry industry’s most innovative retailers, today announced the retirement of Beryl Raff, the company’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. Raff will continue to advise and consult the Helzberg Diamonds management team as non-executive chairman of the board.
With a distinguished retail career spanning 50 years, Raff has led Helzberg Diamonds with 13 years of dedicated service and relentless commitment. Since 2009, she has reshaped and helped the company through the most tumultuous economic times in retail with calm, decisive and strategic leadership and, above all, a big heart.
“I’ll never forget the day I was asked to run Helzberg Diamonds – I couldn’t wait to get started! Fast forward 13 years, it has been an honor to be part of this incredible journey with the talented people of Helzberg and to serve among the outstanding leaders of Berkshire Hathaway,” said Beryl Raff, President and CEO of Helzberg Diamonds. “Together, we have created a business that is agile and responsive to the ever-changing retail environment. Most importantly, Helzberg Diamonds is my family. The relationships I’ve built with my teams, my vendors, and my customers have improved my life beyond measure. I will miss everything about the leadership of this incredible brand, but I am ready to start a new chapter.
Raff guided Helzberg Diamonds to exceed a multitude of important performance goals. As Helzberg’s longest-serving non-family CEO, she made the company relevant again in the retail landscape. Constantly learning and never satisfied with the status quo, she challenged herself and all areas of the business to see every day as an opportunity to do something new and different to propel the company’s success. ‘company.
“I would like to personally thank Beryl for her cutting-edge vision and unique contributions to Helzberg Diamonds. She will be missed,” said Warren Buffett, Chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway.
“When Beryl arrived in Kansas City, she was quick to call Shirley and me and ask us to recommit to the company culture,” said Barnett Helzberg Jr., former president, CEO and member of the founding family of Helzberg Diamonds. . “She valued people and brought the culture of heart and family back to the company. Shirley and I are proud not only of what she has accomplished, but also of calling her a treasured friend.
Raff will complete his term as CEO on July 1, 2022. Brad Hampton, who has served as Chief Financial Officer and member of the Board of Helzberg Diamonds for the past five years, will then assume the role of Managing Director. Julie Yoakum will assume the role of President – Chief Merchandising Officer, and Bruce Pryor, Senior Vice President – E-Commerce, who elevated Helzberg’s digital capabilities, will report to Yoakum. Mitch Maggart will assume the role of Executive Vice President – Chief Operating and Real Estate Officer. Ellen Junger, senior vice president and chief marketing officer, who led Helzberg’s customer-focused marketing approach, will report to Hampton. Brad Hampton will also continue to serve as interim chief financial officer until a successor is selected.
“Beryl’s unwavering leadership has helped position Helzberg Diamonds as an efficient and effective organization dedicated to meeting the needs of its customers,” said Greg Abel, vice president of non-insurance operations for Berkshire Hathaway. “Helzberg’s newly formed management team has outstanding business acumen that will ensure the company continues to be successful in the future.”
In addition to serving as Non-Executive Chairman at Helzberg Diamonds, Raff will continue serving on the boards of Academy Sports and Outdoors, Inc., Helen of Troy Limited and the Larry H. Miller Group of Companies.
About Helzberg Diamonds
Helzberg Diamonds®, a retail and online jewelry store focused on customer service, was founded in 1915 and has over 170 stores nationwide offering a wide selection of fine jewelry, including diamond engagement rings and wedding rings, precious stones and watches. Helzberg Diamonds is proud of its history of offering exceptional value, exclusive designs and timeless jewelry. Helzberg Diamonds is based in North Kansas City, Missouri, and is a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE symbols BRK/A and BRK/B). For locations nearest you, call 1-800-HELZBERG (800-435-9237) or visit Helzberg.com.