The Serengeti West Family
KATHLEEN DENTE Owner and President
Kathleen Dente is the owner and president of Serengeti West Fine Jewelers. After meeting Vincent Dente, she quickly realized that the exciting business of jewelry and design would become a huge part of her life. Vincent’s passion for the gemstone business was contagious. In 1985, she left her background in speech pathology and job as a hospital controller to marry Vincent and join in the business.
Since Vincent’s sudden passing in 1996, Kathleen has worn many hats including bookkeeper, manager, saleswoman, jewelry buyer and janitor. Her passion is Serengeti West - a contemporary store that offers luxurious, classic elegance and fashion forward styles. Kathleen’s mission is to carry on Vincent’s tradition of excellence through unparalleled customer service, quality and integrity.
Kathleen’s Best Tip: “Don’t be intimidated to walk through the door of Serengeti West. Our warm and friendly staff will help you find the perfect piece. We have affordable choices that will complement your style and budget.”
CRAIG A. BOISVERT Jewelry Design
Craig is our master of metal manipulation. It is Craig’s mission to turn customer dreams and his own designs into reality. From first sketch to final polish, Craig feels pride in every piece and loves knowing that what he’s assembling will eventually become a cherished treasure.
The most enjoyable aspect of Craig’s 15 years at Serengeti West has been the relationships he’s built with customers. Since he started making jewelry in 1976, his inquisitive nature about a client’s lifestyle and tastes is evident from the comments of satisfied customers:
“If anyone knows what I want in a piece of jewelry, it’s Craig. He has the uncanny ability to know what I like - he never misses.”
In addition to being a design consultant to his customers, Craig is also a jewelry buyer. He craves jewelry that is clean, comfortable and functional (with a twist of wild thrown in for good measure). His favorite jewelry style period has not happened yet, frankly because he is developing his own. He looks to the future and derives from the past for his designs.
Craig balances his love of art and design with his understanding of today’s jewelry customer. Regardless of their lifestyle or fashion preferences, Craig believes that a woman or man should feel special, stylish and confident in the jewelry they wear - and he considers it his job and pleasure to make that happen.
Craig is a native Californian and moved to the Central Coast in 1987. He’s worked in various facets of the jewelry business while honing his painting, drawing and designing skills. Self taught in graphics, furniture making, darkroom, photography, and now computer skills. His next design dream – building a car from the ground up. Craig keeps very busy. It also keeps him off the streets!
Craig’s Best Tip: “Always pick a piece that is more extravagant or larger than what you would normally wear. Don’t lower your expectation, be a little wild, do something out of character and you won’t be disappointed.”
JANETT LUMPKIN Appraiser
Janett Lumpkin brings a world of experience to Serengeti West Fine Jewelers. Janett has lived in many locales across the United States and abroad, including Venezuela and Japan. She settled on the beautiful California Central Coast in 1993 and is nearing her 10th anniversary at Serengeti West.
Janett began her journey to jewelry in college. She took a metalsmithing class at Arizona State University and worked in retail when she caught the jewelry bug. Since that time, she has been creating her own pieces.
Taking the profession a step further, Janett earned her gemology degree from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), one of the most prestigious credentials for those in the fine jewelry trade. She is a certified appraiser in diamonds, diamond grading, colored stones, colored stone grading and gem identification. She brings impeccable and honest credentials to Serengeti West.
In addition to her background and expertise, Janett's personal style, creativity and integrity makes having an appraisal done by her an enjoyable, educational experience.
Janett’s Best Tip: “Inflation and the changing gemstone market have an ever-changing effect on the value of your jewelry. It’s a good idea to have your jewelry appraisal updated periodically for insurance purposes and peace-of-mind.”
AMANDA THOMASON Customer Service
“Caring and curious” are two words Amanda Thomason would use to describe herself on the job. Amanda understands that customers want to feel as though they can trust Serengeti West with their most sentimental possessions. They want to feel as though they are being taken care of and feel special, because they ARE special.
Amanda’s top priority is taking time to listen and communicate with customers. She prides herself on her ability to give accurate, honest information to her customers in a manner that makes them feel like a friend.
Amanda recently received her A.J.P. (Accredited Jewelry Professional) credential from the Gemological Institute of America. Her love of jewelry began at a very early age while watching her grandfather, a silversmith and rock hound, create jewelry at his workbench. From him, she gained a genuine curiosity for the technical aspect of jewelry making. Every day she finds herself asking, “How is that put together?” or “How did they do that?”
Amanda’s personal jewelry style is “classic with a twist.” A simple yellow gold band or link bracelet with an interesting texture or finish turns the ordinary into the extraordinary and begs a second look.
Amanda’s Best Tip: “Love your jewelry piece, especially a bridal/groom set. You want to look at your jewelry everyday and have it speak to your heart.”
ELAINE WILLIAMS Customer Service
Elaine Williams comes from a very creative family and working background. She loves her work at Serengeti West where the style and art of jewelry combined with customer interaction makes for a unique and creative day, everyday. To those who know Elaine - customers, colleagues and employees – they describe her first and foremost as a trusted friend.
Elaine learned about style and design by watching her father make exquisite furniture and prototypes for Price Pfister as a young girl. Her mother was a seamstress and Elaine custom-made her entire wardrobe in high school. She was quite the trendsetter. Her parent’s creative genes rubbed off on the family; Elaine’s brother is a musician and artist, her sister a sculptor and Elaine’s interior design and decorating have been featured in several magazines and the local newspaper. She owned a home furnishing store before joining Serengeti West in 2001.
Elaine is very adept at helping customers choose jewelry based upon their lifestyle. She keeps up with the latest trends and designs to make sure Serengeti West customers are confident in their choices, style and investment.
Elaine’s Best Tip: “Learn to accessorize by mixing genuine jewelry with costume for a fabulous, luxurious look. Have a couple of classic pieces – diamonds or colored stones – that will be timeless fashion.”
KIM WATSON Customer Service
Kim came to Serengeti West with a background firmly anchored in sales. From owning a coffeehouse/roaster in downtown SLO, to real estate, direct sales and banking, she brings a myriad of talents to her customers at Serengeti. On a foundation of Art History form Willamette University in Salem, Oregon she is happy to be exercising her artistic sensibilities.
Her favorite thoughts on jewelry are; “With a little planning and preparation any event can be made a little bit better with the perfect piece of jewelry.”