Aimee Bradley: Putting Her Best Foot Forward
By Whitney Frasier
What started as an early childhood passion for traveling and a lifelong love of fashion has turned into a career that CSUSM alumna Aimee Bradley can stand on.
Bradley is currently the only specific product material developer for footwear materials at the popular surf footwear brand, Reef. Within this role she sources and develops new materials for closed toe and sandal products, and works collaboratively with designers and developers.
"I love the creativity, the opportunity to travel and the chance to always be learning new things,” said Aimee. “Traveling for design inspiration, sourcing and manufacturing lends to the discovery of new material innovations and technology, the ability to learn more about the manufacturing processes of different types of materials, and the chance to incorporate more sustainable practices."
From Tokyo to Utah, Aimee, a San Diego native, has trekked across the world to find inspiration and the newest materials for the latest footwear. Throughout her career, she has already traveled to five countries and 25 different states.
"There is never a typical work day at Reef,” said Aimee. “My job is very creative, has lots of variety and is never boring. I might be doing anything from trend research in the marketplace, to attending a material show, meeting with vendors, working on future material developments or putting together a material palette for our design team.”
Finding Professional Success
Aimee got her foot in the door at Reef while working in customer service for Cobian Sandals and quickly worked her way up to the design department. Soon after, recruiters from LinkedIn approached her and she was hired by Reef.
Aimee also owns a fashion styling business called BruXley Style that she cofounded with another CSUSM alumna, Jenna Brucks (‘07). They specialize in wardrobe styling for personal clients, curating outfits for special events as well as editorial and catalog photo shoots.
Their work for BruXley has been featured in a variety of fashion magazines such as Florum and Unallied, commercial advertisements for Jenny Craig, as well as product catalogs including Vogue Italia and the Neiman Marcus Book. The duo was also featured in a young entrepreneurs television segment of UT-TV.
“I have always been independent and self-motivated,” said Aimee. “My parents set an amazing example of having a hard work ethic. I think this motivation has helped me pursue my goals and always drives me to want more.”
A Strong Start at CSUSM
Aimee chose CSUSM in 2003 for its running program headed by track legend Steve Scott, the former Olympic distance runner. She attended on an athletic scholarship for cross-country and track and field, graduating in 2007 with a Bachelor of Arts in communications.
“I liked the fact that the University was growing but still had a small school feeling,” said Aimee. “I felt that CSUSM presented a lot of opportunities for students to create new programs and be involved in the community.”
As an athlete she was always motivated to succeed both athletically and academically.
"My first encounter with Aimee would have been her recruiting visit,” said Scott. “I was very impressed not only with her running ability but also how well she had done in high school. She seemed to me to be very coachable, meaning she would put her heart and soul into running."
Today Aimee attributes her success to the education she garnered while attending CSUSM.
“Attending this university gave me the skills I needed to be good at my job,” said Aimee. “I couldn’t be more proud to represent CSUSM.”