Entrepreneur and diamond specialist Gina Caliste plans to change the misconceptions of this continent and to help unify Africa and the world.
Gina began her career in the gold and diamond industry over a year ago. Her passion for jewelry led her to begin a journey into evaluating, procuring, designing, dealing, and wholesaling rough and polished diamonds. Though there was a lack of black women representation in the industry, the mother of two wanted to be a difference-maker. She was determined to succeed and decided to stay in the diamond and gold industry to pave the way for black women and open the door for others.
Motivated by her children she wanted to learn everything she could from the business since it did help her grow financially.The diamond specialist figured out a way to help bring Africa and the world together. She realized that the industry could harmonize the African Diaspora and the world through investments and tourism. Gina hopes to leave a legacy that will help unite Africa and the world. In our recent interview, Gina Caliste discussed her trip to Africa, upcoming projects, and more. Make sure you check out our interview below.
Gina Caliste interview on Voice It
Tiara – What keeps you inspired?
Gina Caliste – My motivation is to connect the diaspora, which is my biggest goal and everything that I am doing with my project. There is a bridge that we need to connect because a lot of us have been blinded to what is going on the other side of the world, and that separates us more so than being different.
Tiara – Tell me about being in the diamond industry and how do you spot fake jewelry?
Gina Caliste – The best way to spot fake jewelry is to go up to a glass mirror, and stick your diamond to the mirror. A real diamond sticks and a fake diamond will fall off. Go to Home Depot and ask for the strongest sandpaper they have and take your stone, rub it against the black 3m sandpaper. If the diamond scratches it’s real if you don’t see any scratches it’s fake, make sure you have your stones GIA certified before you purchase.
Tiara – Tell me about your business trip to Africa?
Gina Caliste – Bringing people back to Africa is my biggest mission. Conducting business in Africa is different from the states. It’s important to take your time and have patients, however, it’s rewarding and I recommend every African American to go and visit.
Tiara – What places would you recommend people to go in Africa?
Gina Caliste – South Africa and the main cities are Johannesburg, CapeTown, and Durban. CapeTown reminds you of Miami, it is one of the best well-known places to travel to in the world, and Johannesburg reminds you of New York City.
Tiara – How do you feel about the misconception of Africa?
Gina Caliste – The misconception about Africa is people saying that there is nowhere to shop or enjoy. West African women are the most stylish women in the world. People think that you will stay in terrible huts, I stayed at one of the most luxurious 6-star safari hotels in Africa, which was one of the best hotels I stayed at in my life. Another misconception is that they hate us, and we hate them, but the people in Africa love seeing us there.
Tiara – What is next for you?
Gina Caliste – I will be working on organizing a major group conference summit in Africa for people to network. I documented my attire trip to Africa which is in post production and a network is interested in picking it up and distributing my documentary. For my jewelry side, I will be designing a line, creating my own emeralds and more.