About Brad

As a well known jewelry maker and teacher, Bradford M. Smith has been featured on national radio and local television. He is a frequent guest speaker for rock and mineral clubs. His articles are featured monthly in over 200 newsletters in six countries. He has written for Jewelry Artist Magazine, has been featured in Rock & Gem Magazine, and is the author of Bench Tips For Jewelry Making and Broom Casting for Creative Jewelry .

Raised in Reading, Massachusetts, Smith has led a wildly divergent life. His early professional career with the U.S. Navy and the Department of Commerce focused on manufacturing automation technology where computers are used to control machines and robots to produce industrial parts.

He chaired the Industrial Automation Planning Panel of the American National Standards Institute and led the US IGES/PDES project of 240 companies that developed ways to share manufacturing data. Smith created and led a committee of the International Standards Organization with 18 countries to standardize the exchange of digital product data needed in the normal course of business. The IGES and STEP technologies that resulted from these projects are now widely used in the aircraft, automotive, and heavy equipment industries worldwide. He was instrumental in writing numerous industry and government publications and has presented workshops and speeches in twelve countries.

While his work environment was highly technical, his home life was not. With his family he built and managed Whimsey Hill Farm in rural Virginia. The farm's other occupants, his wife's horses, cats, dogs, and even a cow, were a constant test of his patience and problem-solving abilities.

In addition to farming their own hay, Smith and his wife ran a dozen horse shows each year, one of which was a five-day affair with over a 1000 competitors. The couple was frequently featured in equestrian-related magazines, newspapers, and local publications. Smith says the contrast between the farm and the technology gave him the best of both worlds. In fact, he has written a memoir about that time in his life titled Horsing Around - How 26 Rescue Horses, 12 Cats, 10 Dogs, and a Cow Plus 2 Suburban Teenagers Made Me A Better Human.

Currently living in Los Angeles, California, Smith discovered rock-hounding in the desert. A long-time member of the Culver City Rock Club, he has taught lapidary skills, led field trips, organized the club's annual gem shows, and presently serves as club President.

During six years as a studio jeweler he began teaching small workshops on soldering and casting. After earning a formal State Teaching Credential in 2002, he taught "Advanced Jewelry" classes in the Adult Education Department of the Los Angeles school system. Then in 2009, he was invited to design and built a new jewelry facility at the Santa Monica Adult Education Center where he continues to combine his creative side with his technical and shop abilities to run popular classes.

To contact Smith: