For over 35 years, Michael Coan has been involved with the Jewelry Industry; his training, both formal and informal, includes bench work, sales, design, manufacturing and production, including business management and ownership. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from the State University of New York at Albany, in the areas of studio art, jewelry design, theatre design and Art History. From Albany, he proceeded to the University of Bridgeport, Conn to continue a scholastic interest in Industrial Design. In 1977, Michael received his Graduate Gemologist Certificate from the GIA, New York.
His work career includes a Bloomingdale's in the Glass, Silver and China department; in the fine jewelry department at Christie, Manson and Woods, under the direction of M. Francois Curiel, as a staff gemologist, catalogue production and client relations; Fred Leighton, an emporium specializing in antique, period and fine jewels, as sales assistant manager and gemologist. Michael spent nine years with the House of Julius Cohen, Jeweler, Madison Avenue, New York, as executive assistant to the owner/designer/salesman-extraordinaire, Mr. Julius Cohen. This was a private salon-based establishment in the refined style of private clientele-based retail founded in 1954 with an exclusive national and international clientele.
All the while, Michael had been honing his skill in manufacturing and price analysis, the history and psychology of jewelry and ornamentation and appraisal sciences. In 1986, Michael opened and is current president of Michael S. Coan, GG. Inc., a consulting firm specializing in price and business structuring and the appraisal of jewelry and objets de vertu. In that same year, he accepted a position of adjunct Assistant Professor in the Jewelry Design Department at the Fashion Institute of Technology, NY and, from 2001 to 2015, was the Chair of the Jewelry Design Department; currently, he is the director of the Certificate of Gemology, and conducts courses in Gemology, Diamond Grading, Principles of Appraising, Cost Estimation and Changes and Tend, and is avidly active in program development. Mr. Coan has also organized and participated in symposia related to the various aspects of the Jewelry Industry for FIT and has offered specialized seminars and workshops for various trade organizations including JA , MJSA and various mineralogical societies.