Independent Gemological Laboratories

Independent Gemological Laboratories was founded in 1999 by Curtis Lowrey. Mr Lowrey is a native of Dallas, Texas. In 1984 after graduating from North Texas State University with a B.A. in Marketing he joined Zale Corporation’s Mission Jewelers Division as a manager-in-training. Upon completion of their CPA courses in 1985 he was promoted to Manager of the Lufkin, Texas store, serving there for five years as store manager. While in Lufkin he completed his GIA Graduate Gemologist degree with the ambition to move to their corporate headquarters in Irving Texas. In 1990 Mr. Lowrey was promoted to Zale’s New York inspection staff, utilizing his skills in gemology and store experience to perform both quality control and gemological testing. After thirteen years of service to the corporation he left to increase his knowledge of appraisal. He joined Macy’s Appraisal department in 1998. This was very interesting working environment as there were many unusual items to appraise. Then, in August of 1999 he took advantage his skill and knowledge finding Independent Gemological Laboratories. His knowledge, years of experience, and contacts in jewelry trade combined with staff of professional’s independent have built a credible laboratory for diamond and jewelry evaluation.

Today, the company has grown and expanded its reach to the other side of the globe. India is a major jewelry production center for cutting diamonds and making jewelry. In 2004 independent opened its first overseas office in Mumbai (Bombay). As globalization has impacted the jewelry business Independent has had to address its ability to service its client base as jewelers more manufacturing to their jewelry factories overseas, Independent is meeting their challenge along with change comes a new set of business challenges. The internal markets of India and china are often described as emerging. There the common man is just developing a taste for diamond jewelry. Previously only gold jewelry was purchased; mostly as a hedge in unstable currencies we believe that certification will be as important as it is in the U.S. today. Our primary consideration is in making our grading standardized across the globe. Training has become a focal point inside the company. Independent can only be as strong as its staff of professionals starting from the president of the company to the grading staff and the professionals who manage the company and fulfillment of customer orders.

The headquarters is located in New York city, where we are planning for future challenges in an ever changing market place, detecting treatments and enhancements to diamonds and colored stones is a constantly evolving challenge with research and education independent prides itself on staying current with the latest developments within the gemstone industry.


Inspection & Testing



500 Seventh Ave Ste 12-B

New York, NY US

Main 212.382.0008