Brad Hemphill is a life-long Gila Valley resident. Brad was born in Safford to Charlie and Diana Hemphill. Charlie’s family came to Safford in the 1950’s from McNary’s saw mills to run the Safford Motel. Diana’s family, the Cluffs, have been in the Gila Valley for multiple generations.
Brad attended Safford Schools, graduating from Safford High School in 1987. After graduating from Eastern Arizona College and Western New Mexico University, he returned to the area to begin his teaching career. Brad taught for 19 years at Pima High School and also served for a time as athletic director. He coached football and baseball and was the varsity girls’ basketball coach for 17 years, appearing in five state championship games.
In 2013, Brad had the opportunity to teach at Willcox High School with his father, Charlie. They were able to teach two years together before Charlie’s passing in 2015. Brad has remained active in the community over the years, serving as Gila Valley’s coordinator for Reach Out and Read, running the Newspapers in Education program for the Eastern Arizona Courier, and serving for a time on the advisory board for the Safford City--Graham County Library. Brad has a passion for Safford’s history and a desire to affect it’s continued growth and prosperity.
Brad has been married to his junior college sweetheart, Amy, for 30 years. Amy came to Thatcher from her home in Kentucky to live with her aunt and uncle (Ralph and Glenda Orr) and attend Eastern Arizona College. They have three adult children.