Jimmy Poyer was born in 1954 close to Mexican Water, Arizona and was raised near Red Mesa, south of the Four Corners. His traditional Navajo family upbringing gave him a strong sense of values. He attended high school in Shiprock and did well in school. He spent a few semesters at BYU and the University of New Mexico before deciding that college was not for him. Instead, he felt the lure of travel and his first love, music. He played lead guitar and sang vocals for nearly two decades, many times as the opening act for well-known country performers everywhere from Canada to Mexico. He began to work as an apprentice to renowned jeweler, Jimmie Harrison when he wasn’t on tour. It wasn’t long before he began to make jewelry on his own, borrowing the inlay style from Harrison, but creating his own unique Native American designs.
This new passion for making jewelry coincided with his desire to quit traveling and stay home with his wife Theresa and their children. While his jewelry is sold across the country in fine galleries and museum shops and demand for his work is high, Poyer has resisted the temptation to set up a shop with other people producing his work or to cast the silver and gold for his designs. Every piece is built by hand from sheet silver, wire and natural stones. He enjoys working with turquoise, but is fascinated with the patterns and colors from shells, malachite, jet, coral, sugilite, lapis lazuli and other semi-precious stones. Jimmy Poyer is proud of every piece he creates. His greatest pleasure comes from having others enjoy his work. He presently lives in Farmington, New Mexico.