News & Features » Cover Story

Robin Adolf Salzberg, 39

Owner of Lustre by Adolf

The person who nominated Salzberg called her “the best secret keeper in Richmond.” That’s because she sells fine jewelry and has to keep it to herself – even when it’s bought for people she knows. “My best friend got engaged and all my friends were like, seriously?” she says, laughing. “I’m not telling anyone, because as soon as someone gets on the rosé, it will come out.”

Her parents were in the retail business: Her mother was part owner of Saxon Shoes and her grandparents started Adolf jewelers back in the 1950s. Salzberg worked for Saxon in her younger days, then after having kids worked for her father and when he retired, opened her own boutique business. “My whole passion is the customer,” she says. “Taking the pressure out of the jewelry-buying experience.”

But the Richmond native also gives back. She founded and chairs the Jewish Federation Pearl Society, which helps younger Jewish women get involved in philanthropic endeavors. “It’s 18 to 40, super influential age,” she says. Together, they’ve been big supporters for the Richmond Animal League, Comfort Zone Camp, the Children’s Museum of Richmond, the American Heart Society, Caritas and the Weinstein Jewish Community Center. “Jewels for a Cure sponsored through the Children’s Hospital is a big one,” she says. “We all donate a big piece of jewelry to raffle off.”

Amazingly, sales have been way up during the pandemic.

“A lot of engagement rings lately,” she explains, plus other jewelry. “I’m not sure if its government checks, or I’m-sorry-I can’t-take-you-on-that-big-trip, honey – or someone’s in the doghouse. Those are my three guesses.”

Back to the 2020 Top 40 Under 40