Barbara Wheat is leaving Bangkok to return to the United States and take on a new role within the Ho Group of Companies.
Bangkok--Industry veteran Barbara Wheat is returning to the United States this month and taking on a new position within the Ho Group of Companies.

Wheat lived in Bangkok and worked as president of the Asian Institute of Gemological Sciences (AIGS), part of the Ho Group of Companies. She is leaving that position to become the Ho Group’s vice president of international relations and business development for the company, and will live in Florida.

“As much as I have enjoyed my role with AIGS, I am looking forward to representing the Ho Group of Companies internationally,” Wheat said. “I decided I wanted to return to the U.S. to live near my mother, who is 89 this year.”
 
In her new position, she will work to raise the profile and boost the client base of the Ho Group of Companies, which include the AIGS Lab and School; the Jewelry Trade Center, a skyscraper in downtown Bangkok that contains a number of jewelry businesses; the Asia Gem Center brokerage; and gemstones trading platform Gemwow.com.
 
She will work with Henry Ho, founder and chairman emeritus of AIGS, on special projects including the Bangkok Diamond and Precious Stones Exchange, the NCDIA Asia, the World Ruby Forum, the World’s Most Beautiful Ruby Contest, the first China Ruby-Sapphire Forum, the Africa Asia Gem Corridor, the Ruby Heart of Love and the Blue Ocean Heart Art for Humanity Global Tour.
 
“We’re very sorry to see Barbara leave Bangkok but are pleased that she will still be working with our group of companies in a key strategic role to develop international business opportunities,” Ho said.
 
Wheat holds a master of science focused on sustainability management from Columbia University.

She previously served as executive director of the International Colored Gemstone Association and executive vice president of the Natural Color Diamond Association.

Wheat also is now partnering with Joe Menzie, whom she worked with at ICA, to launch Gemstone Expeditions, a company that offers members of the trade guided trips to important gemstone mining areas around the world.

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