LOS ANGELES — (September 14, 2011) — Former California Jewelers Association (CJA) Vice President Robert B. Westover passed away quietly in his sleep on September 8, 2011 at the age of 88, announced CJA Executive Director and CEO Rossana Aguilar.

Westover was hired as Executive Director of the CRJA in 1965, and was elected Executive Vice President in 1973 when CRJA changed its name to CJA. Westover retired in 1989 after 24 years with CJA. In May of 1997, Pat O’Rourke, then CJA Executive Director, suffered a severe stroke, and Westover graciously returned to the CJA as interim Executive Director in her absence. The CJA established the prestigious Robert B. Westover GIA Scholarship in 1998, which is awarded annually to a deserving individual. That same year, CJA created the Robert B. Westover Distinguished Service Award for an individual who has made outstanding contributions to the jewelry industry. Robert and Helen Westover were married on June 15, 1951 and enjoyed 60 wonderful years together.

Westover is survived by his wife, Helen Westover, his niece, Nancy K. Austin, a writer, his nephew, Chris Westover, an attorney, and his wife, Barbara Westover, an architect. Burial at Forest Lawn Cemetery later this week will be private. The family has requested that in lieu of flowers donations be made to the California Jewelers Association’s Robert B. Westover Scholarship Fund.