Philanthropist and Brand Ambassador
Most companies can name their favorite clients. But when a wonderful client also has a deep passion for a product that is only matched by the individuals who create it; when she opts to host a cocktail party in honor of a personal friend within a boutique instead of another venue; and when the causes she supports overlap with a company’s philanthropic interests—then a lifelong relationship that far exceeds the trappings of business is born. Stacy Cohen, a native of Texas who is married to technology entrepreneur Mouli Cohen, found that deep bond with the diamond jewelry firm Leviev. Elite Traveler caught up with the Leviev Brand Ambassador in the midst of a global trip, and she discussed the many charitable causes that she and Leviev both support; her love of diamonds; and the dream piece of jewelry she hopes to create with Leviev one day.
ET: I understand you are a collector of art and rare diamonds. Tell us how you developed a love for these creations and what the highlights of your collections are.
Stacy Cohen: I have always loved important works of art by artists such as Calder, Picasso, Matisse and Miro. Diamonds too are true works of art; they are in fact nature’s own masterpieces. Ultimately cut, polished and set, Leviev’s jewelry creations are treasured works of art that have captured my heart. The Leviev jewels in my collection could be housed in the finest of museums.
ET: How were you introduced to Leviev diamonds?
Stacy Cohen: I was working with the Ohr Avner Foundation on a charity event benefiting one of the largest orphanages in Russia. As it turned out, Mr. Leviev was the founder of the Ohr Avner Foundation; in fact it is named after his father, Avner Leviev. A collector of diamonds myself, I was well aware of Mr. Leviev’s role in the diamond industry and I was fortunate to have met him at that event. A few weeks after our first encounter I was invited to the Leviev boutique where I was exposed to the most extraordinary assortment of large, rare and colored diamonds. The boutique is in essence a museum of diamonds with a warm, friendly atmosphere. I have been blessed to get to know the brand on a personal level, and Leviev is without a doubt, a brand I can trust.
ET: What are some of your favorite Leviev pieces to wear?
Stacy Cohen: Pink diamonds have a special place in my heart. I have this amazing Leviev diamond necklace with vivid pink oval diamonds scattered throughout. The way the necklace was crafted is just incredible. I also have a 23-carat intense yellow heart shape pendent that I just adore. I had always shied away from yellow diamonds until someone at Leviev convinced me to try a pair of earrings on; since then yellow diamonds have become one of my favorites. I constantly find myself basing my outfits on the jewelry I want to wear that day, instead of the other way around!
ET: What would you like Leviev to make for you next?
Stacy Cohen: Leviev has the largest inventory of diamonds in the world; it’s so hard to decide! I would love for Leviev to create a rare fancy pink diamond heart necklace for me. One of my favorite parts about working with Leviev is that I am able to become fully involved in the creative process, beginning with the design. Whether I base the design around a single diamond or on an overall motif, a level of intimacy develops and the piece suddenly has so much more meaning to me.
ET: What do you do as brand ambassador for Leviev?
Stacy Cohen: Being a Leviev Ambassador is truly an honor for me. I am able to participate in many charity events each year helping to raise awareness for each given cause- something that has always been a passion of mine. On many occasions Leviev has been kind enough to donate an item of jewelry for auction, and in turn I will present the piece. Since I have studied the history of diamonds and believe that charitable endeavors are paramount, it is a perfect fit.
ET: Which charitable causes are you most involved with?
Stacy Cohen: I am involved with numerous charities. Of those closest to my heart, however, are Camp Okizu, which is a summer camp for children diagnosed with cancer, and Larry King’s Cardiac Foundation, which provides funding for life saving cardiac procedures for those who, due to limited means, have no insurance.
ET: Have Leviev and your favorite charities/causes aligned with one another on any programs?
Stacy Cohen: Yes, we have aligned on many charities including Women in Film’s, Crystal + Lucy Awards, supporting women in film and television, the Chrysalis Butterfly Ball, which helps the homeless through job opportunities, and the Race to Erase MS, helping to treat and ultimately cure Multiple Sclerosis. Most recently, I partnered with Leviev and we held a ‘Valentine’ charity event in which we raised $100,000 for two of my favorite charities; The Children’s Hospital and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
ET: When you aren’t at home, where do you like to travel? And what recent trip stands out in your mind as being particularly wonderful?
Stacy Cohen: I love to fly to my beloved Monaco, live la dolce vita in the paradise that is Italy’s Amalfi Coast, or experience the history and romance of Paris. However, I particularly enjoyed my last trip to London. I toured the Tower of London viewing the British Crown Jewels and the Koh-i-Nor, a 105-carat diamond, which was seized by the East Indian Company and became part of the British Crown Jewels when Queen Victoria became Empress of India in 1877. It reminded me of the 102-carat D Flawless diamond that Leviev houses; it is one of the most magnificent stones I have ever seen. When you hold it in your hand it is as big as your palm!
ET: Has anyone else in your family caught your passion for Leviev diamonds?
Stacy Cohen: My extended family of friends definitely share my passion for Leviev diamonds. I have introduced many friends to the brand through my charitable endeavors and when I wear Leviev, friends will undoubtedly ask about the gems. In fact, tomorrow night we will be honoring one of my dear friends for her generosity with an exclusive cocktail reception in Leviev’s Madison Avenue boutique. The theme for the event is yellow diamonds. I can’t wait!