The year was 2013, and I was on my way to New York City to interview for an editorial internship at a publication I had never heard of before. I was two weeks shy of college graduation, and all I was hoping for was to land a big job in Manhattan and write and learn as much as possible. Similar to most college graduates, I was nervous and troubled that I’d be spending months and months applying to jobs and going on endless interviews. But unbeknownst to me, I’d be interviewing at a magazine where I’d spend the next few years learning and working alongside someone who was greatly admired and appreciated throughout the optical industry.

That summer, Gloria Nicola gave me the opportunity of a lifetime and hired me to be the 20/20 editorial intern along with James Spina and Christine Yeh. What was originally intended to be one summer of learning and writing about eyewear, ended up turning into a career that I am forever grateful for. My first few years working alongside Gloria, I was in awe of her expertise and knowledge of not only the eyewear industry, but of the world. I could sit here and make a list of all the things Gloria taught me, but that would take up a lot of time and space so let’s just say most of my knowledge in regards to eyewear, trends and the industry as a whole can be traced back to her. I wouldn’t call myself an eyewear expert quite yet, but I’m getting there thanks to all the knowledge and wisdom Gloria passed along to me.

Gloria was one of a kind, and I can’t state that enough. She was kind, compassionate and witty when you’d least expect it and had an infectious laugh that always made me smile. Our Jobson family was saddened and disheartened to hear of her recent passing. Gloria retired only two short years ago, and we still think and reminisce about her quite often. Whenever I attend a tradeshow, I am often asked how Gloria is and told how dearly she is missed. She will always be remembered by people all over the country.

So, thank you, Gloria. You probably don’t know this but you inspired me to have a career I didn’t even know I wanted. We will forever miss your bright and bold eyewear choices with matching jewelry, love for cats and penchant for anything out of the ordinary. Thank you for being you.

20/20 has established a fundraising page in honor of Gloria and her love of animals. The fund supports the North Shore Animal League’s efforts toward adoptions and pet rescues. Please check our Facebook page to find the link or visit bit.ly/GloriaNicolasFundraiser.

Victoria Garcia
Associate Editor
vgarcia@jobson.com