Longtime Retailer Frank Bromberg Jr. Dies at 87

IndependentsJun 06, 2019

Longtime Retailer Frank Bromberg Jr. Dies at 87

The fifth generation to join the family business, Bromberg was known for being outgoing, compassionate and putting others first.

Frank H. Bromberg Jr., the fifth generation to join the Bromberg family business, died June 4 at the age of 87. He was described as a philanthropic, compassionate, dependable and honest man who improved the lives of many through his friendship.

Jacksonville, Fla.—Frank H. Bromberg Jr., a fifth-generation jeweler, died June 4 in Cashiers, North Carolina.

He was 87 years old.

Bromberg was born in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1931 to Frank Hardy Bromberg Sr. and Annie Maude Wilkinson Bromberg.

He received his bachelor’s degree from the College of Business at the University of Alabama, where he graduated summa cum laude, and went on to get his master’s in retailing from New York University.

Bromberg served as a captain in the U.S. Air Force after graduation, spending two years as a base exchange officer at Dreux Air Force Base in France.

After the military, he joined the family jewelry business—Bromberg & Co., founded in 1836—as the fifth generation of family management, eventually becoming its president and chairman of the board.

In 1974, Herb Underwood sold his multi-store business, Underwood Jewelers, to the Bromberg family, adding to the company’s lineup of locations.

Today, the family runs jewelry stores in Alabama and Florida, with sons Frederick “Ricky” Wilkinson Bromberg serving as president of Bromberg & Co. and Clayton Bromberg as president of Underwood Jewelers.

Frank Bromberg met his wife, Lella Clayton Bromberg, in high school, and the two were married for almost 65 years.

He held a number of leadership positions throughout his life, including past president of Jewelers of America and the American Gem Society, the latter of which awarded Bromberg with its prestigious Robert M. Shipley Award.

He also served as a member of the board of trustees of the University of Alabama, past president of the Crippled Children’s Foundation, past senior warden and past treasurer of the Cathedral Church of the Advent, and past president of the Kiwanis Club of Birmingham.

Outside of work, Bromberg enjoyed playing golf and tennis, and watching Alabama football and basketball. He also loved spending time at the family mountain house in Cashiers.

The Brombergs said their patriarch was “an exceptional person because he had a servant’s heart,” always putting others before himself.

Bromberg was well-liked among his peers, and he remained humble throughout his life, his family said, devoting his time to family, faith, the jewelry business and the University of Alabama.

He is survived by his wife, Lella, and four children—Frank Hardy Bromberg III; C. Clayton Bromberg (Christy); Ricky Bromberg (Nancy); and Lella Bromberg Wilbanks (Bruce)—as well as seven grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his parents and by grandchildren Virginia McMillian

Bromberg, Elizabeth Bromberg Wilbanks and Zoë Proferis Bromberg.

Bromberg’s memorial service is scheduled to take place Saturday at 1 p.m. at the Cathedral Church of the Advent in Birmingham, with visitation immediately following the service.

Memorials in his honor may be directed to: The Cathedral Church of the Advent, 2017 6th Ave. North, Birmingham, AL 35203; The Crippled Children’s Foundation, 2019 4th Ave. North, Ste. 101, Birmingham, AL 35203; and The University of Alabama Culverhouse College of Business Department of Marketing, The University of Alabama, Box 870101, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487.
Brecken Branstratoris the senior editor, gemstones at National Jeweler, covering sourcing, pricing and other developments in the colored stone sector.

The Latest

Recorded WebinarsMay 27, 2022
Watch: The 5 Things I Always Take to a Trade Show

Editor-in-Chief Michelle Graff is joined by three industry veterans to talk about the items they never leave behind and why.

CollectionsMay 27, 2022
92Y Has Selected its 2022 Artist in Residence

German jewelry artist Alexander Blank is the fourth designer to receive the honor.

CollectionsMay 27, 2022
Piece of the Week: Which Movie Inspired This Chopard Masterpiece?

The answer is “Hair,” and the necklace is from Chopard’s 2022 Red Carpet Collection, rolled out at the Cannes Film Festival.

Brought to you by
3 Reasons to Offer Estate Buying at Your Store

Provide your customers with a seamless selling solution by partnering with Windsor Jewelers, Inc.

Supplier BulletinMay 26, 2022
Extraordinary Italian Jewelry at JCK and COUTURE

Sponsored by Italian Trade Agency

Weekly QuizMay 26, 2022
This Week’s Quiz
Test your knowledge of the latest jewelry news with this quick test.
Take the Quiz
SourcingMay 26, 2022
Q&A: Deciphering De Beers’ Blockchain Platform

David Prager virtually sat down with Editor-in-Chief Michelle Graff to answer questions about the rollout of Tracr at scale.

AuctionsMay 26, 2022
Bonhams New York Jewels Auction Is a White Glove Sale

Jewelry and objects belonging to Bette Midler, heiress Hélène Irwin Crocker Fagan, and Lady Sylvia Ashley were among the highlights.

Brought to you by
Dive into GIA’s Pearl Expertise

When it comes to knowing the identity and quality of your pearls, count on GIA as your independent pearl experts.

FinancialsMay 26, 2022
Movado Posts Record Q1 Sales Despite ‘Challenging’ US Market

The company opted not to raise its fiscal guidance, citing a slowdown in the U.S. market as a key reason.

TechnologyMay 26, 2022
State of Retail: The Pros and Cons of 4 Jewelry-Selling Platforms

From “old-school” eBay to new kid on the block 1stDibs, we asked jewelers about their experiences selling jewelry in non-traditional places.

Policies & IssuesMay 26, 2022
Barbara Wheat Named Executive Director of Ethical Metalsmiths

She has nearly 30 years’ experience in the gem and jewelry industry and a background in nonprofit management.

EditorsMay 25, 2022
7 Standout Tiaras in Sotheby’s Platinum Jubilee Exhibition

Senior Editor Brecken Branstrator chooses the pieces she’d most want to see in person.

MajorsMay 25, 2022
Anne Hathaway Is Bulgari’s Newest Ambassador

The actress joins Zendaya and others in a new advertising campaign.

IndependentsMay 25, 2022
MVEye, Wedding Report Partner on New Jewelry Research Platform

“Today’s Wedding Jewelry Consumer” shares data about engagement ring market size, lab-grown and natural diamonds, and more.

ColumnistsMay 24, 2022
The PR Adviser: 10 Questions to Contemplate

Columnist Lilian Raji wants to walk you through the customer journey. But first, she’d like you to answer a few questions.

Events & AwardsMay 24, 2022
8 Gold Jewelry Designers Unveil New Platinum Designs

Several Couture brands have partnered with Platinum Guild International ahead of the jewelry trade show.

Lab-GrownMay 24, 2022
Kendra Scott Unveils Lab-Grown Engagement Ring Collection

The jewelry company is moving into bridal just a month after branching out into the watch world.

SourcingMay 24, 2022
State of the Diamond Industry: Where Does Supply Go From Here?

The 2008 economic crisis, COVID-19, and sanctions on Russian goods have set the stage for an interesting decade for natural diamond supply.

Events & AwardsMay 24, 2022
WJA to Host Diversity Keynote at New Las Vegas Breakfast Event

The Generating Community Impact fundraiser on June 11 will feature Karine Bah Tahé of Blue Level Training.

WatchesMay 23, 2022
Steven Kaiser, Watch Industry Veteran and Beloved Mentor, Dies at 68

Kaiser, whose illustrious career spanned decades, died suddenly on Friday.

IndependentsMay 23, 2022
Long’s Jewelers to Open New Location

The family-owned jeweler is relocating its Braintree, Massachusetts, store to a new space.

IndependentsMay 23, 2022
Luxury Goods Veteran Olivier Stip Joins Chicago Jeweler CD Peacock

He will step into the retailer’s newly created role of chief development officer.

GradingMay 23, 2022
Gem-A Launches Digital Entry-Level Gemology Course

GemIntro is meant to give a broad introduction to gems and gemology.

Recorded WebinarsMay 20, 2022
Watch: Responsible Sourcing and the Gold Supply Chain

Three industry experts discuss “recycled” gold vs. mined, their challenges and benefits, and how jewelers can navigate the area.

FinancialsMay 20, 2022
Richemont’s 2022 Jewelry Sales in the Americas Nearly Double

Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpels, and Buccellati put on stellar performances.

AuctionsMay 20, 2022
Piece of the Week: ‘Birds in Flight’ by Oscar Heyman

The New York jeweler made this incredible, colorful Art Deco bracelet featuring tropical birds in 1927.

SurveysMay 19, 2022
5 Predictions for Jewelry Retail in the Second Half of 2022

From a slowdown in sales growth to rising costs, Fruchtman Marketing outlines its expectations for the second half of the year.


This site uses cookies to give you the best online experience. By continuing to use & browse this site, we assume you agree to our Privacy Policy