About Us

David Conger, Graduate Gemologist

Conger’s Jewellers

Conger’s Jewellers was established in 1981 by David Conger, a GIA Graduate Gemologist, as a local independent jewellery appraisal service.

This was at a time when there were few qualified Gemologists in Ottawa. With some initial advertising. He attracted the interest of some local jewellery stores which were sending their customer’s jewellery to Montreal and Toronto for appraisal. By 1988, Conger was providing a jewellery appraisal service for more than 30 jewellery stores in Ottawa, as well as some trust companies and the Canada Revenue Agency.

David Conger is a graduate of the GIA (Graduate Gemologist – Earned in Residence). His education was at the Santa Monica campus of GIA. With 40 years in the jewellery business, he is an expert in the Ottawa area on diamonds and has appraised thousands of items of jewellery.

Our History

Dave Conger started working in the jewellery business as a student in 1976. Eager to learn to be a goldsmith, he quickly picked up the skills to repair jewellery and was doing the repairs at the store he worked at – Mappins Jewellers. His love for jewellery continued to grow and by 1980, he had graduated as a Gemologist from one of the world’s well-known colleges in America.

After graduating, he was offered a job in Toronto for a chain of jewellery stores as the chief diamond and gemstone buyer/jewellery appraiser. By the end of that year, he was asked to manage the jewellery repair and appraisal business for Simpson’s and The Bay across Canada. This was the first time in Canada that jewellery appraisals were performed while you wait and on opening day, the line outside the Queen Street Toronto store was around the block for hours.

It was clear that people were hungry for the service and were reluctant to let their jewellery out of their sight. The days were long and Dave set his sights on starting his own business so he returned to Ottawa to establish Conger’s Jewellers, a local independent jewellery appraisal service. He provided jewellery appraisals in the privacy and security of customer’s homes and offices.

This was at a time when there were just one or two Gemologists in Ottawa. Many stores were shipping jewellery out of town for appraisal and no one offered to do the work in front of customers. With some advertising, Dave attracted the interest of local jewellery stores. By 1988, Conger was providing the jewellery appraisal service for 30 fine retail jewellery stores in Ottawa, as well as several trust companies and the Canada Revenue Agency – Customs & Excise.

Education & Experience

Dave Conger is a Graduate Gemologist with the distinction of Earned in Residence at the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). This distinction is above and beyond the norm of many gemologists who study correspondence courses.

It’s important because residence students are exposed to far more testing in the area of gem identification and diamond grading. His education was at the Santa Monica campus of GIA. With more than 40 years in the jewellery business, he is recognized as an expert in his field and has appraised several thousand items of jewellery.

Jewellery Design

In 1992, Dave Conger opened his jewellery store in Ottawa, along with his father Gerald who had recently retired from a senior position in the public service of the Canadian federal government. This was a move into the world of jewellery sales and design. After 3 years, Conger’s Jewellers decided to invest in one of Ottawa’s first GemVision Design Workstations.

This was a heavy investment into new technology. The design software was new to the industry. Dave Conger has always been committed to maintaining state-of-the-art technologies in jewellery design, including Panther 3D Design, RhinoGold, MatrixGold and now 3D printing. His enthusiasm has never turned down. His love for designing jewellery is obvious to people who meet him.

What’s Happening Now?

For 29 years, Conger’s Jewellers was located at Hampton Park Plaza, at the corner of Carling and Kirkwood Avenue. Dave Conger closed the retail store when the pandemic started. Today you will find him working from his home-based gem lab and design studio. Customers are welcome to contact and meet with him by appointment. Due to the risks associated with the Covid-19 virus, meetings are curbside. Emails and phone calls are always welcome.

Quality service and personalized attention distinguish Conger’s Jewellers from most retail stores. Lower overhead guarantees good value. If you give Conger’s Jewellers your business, you won’t be disappointed.

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