My love of the rodeo is what brought me to jewelry. I was always intriqued with "California style" engraving on bits and spurs. This inspired me to get a job at Perkins Jewelers Supply in El Paso, Texas, where I worked from 1987 through 1991, and began learning hand engraving and the jewelry trade. Later, I obtained a degree in Farrier Science and spent four years at Bishop, California and Yosemite National Park as a farriar for a pack guide service for science expeditions, recreational tourists, and hunters in northern California.
I then apprenticed for 16 years with Henry Silverman Jewelers and was honored to be invited to serve an in-studio apprenticeship under Herman Gandora. Also, during my time at Silverman Jewelers, I had the privilege to serve a studio apprenticehip under Master Jeweler Blaine Lewis. I was recruited to Indiana to work at an AGS store where I was responsible for all custom work and design to include wax carving, model and mold making, castings, and other goldsmith procedures, and did so from 1997 until 2010. I am one of the few goldsmiths in America who can reair invisible settings and can actually do the model making, by hand, which is necessary for handcrafted custom jewelry and musical instruments. This unique ability took me to Conn-Selmer Inc in Elkhart, Indiana, in 2010. Conn-Selmer is the leading manufacturer of musical instruments for concert bands, marching bands and orchestras at the student, amateur and professional level.
While at Conn-Selmer, my engraving and custom abilities were used for musical instrument manufacturing and repairs. Those skills also were used to make custom pieces for several professional musicians. I made the frontal drum emblems for Ringo Star, and have also created pieces for Julian Bliss, Van Halen, and others. The quality of my work also gained me custom work for non-musical celebrities, and I had the privilege of doing Baseball Hall of Famer Nolan Ryan's belt buckle commemorating his "one millionth pitch".
In 2017, I was pleased to come to Van Horne Jewelers where I enjoy serving customers to the best of my ability. During my free time I continue to pursuse my passion for rodeo by traveling throughout the Midwest, Southwest, and Mexico to participate as a "team roper". I am sanctioned by the Mexican Professional Cowboy (CHARRO) Association.