Don’s family came to Montana in the early 1800s, making him a fourth generation Montanan. Don became interested in rocks as a child, and gemstones quickly became his passion. As a trained gemologist and goldsmith, Don takes pride in jewelry design. His fascination with gemstones has taken him all over the world. Before opening the Gem Gallery, in 1994, Don owned and operated his own gemstone import business, Merchants of Interest which later became The Gem Gallery.
Don’s interest in Montana sapphires keeps him busy traveling to the Yogo Sapphire mine, as well as overseas for gemstone cutting. He has taught many classes on Yogo sapphires and the other sapphires in Montana, and is considered a leading authority on these precious gems by many.