Alabama Academy of Honor


Thomas Elred Bradford, Jr.

The following biographical sketch was compiled at the time of induction into the Academy in 1996.



Selma in Dallas County, Alabama, is the birthplace of Thomas Elred Bradford, Jr., the son of Thomas Elread Bradford, Sr. and Mary Johnson Bradford. Tom Bradford is a graduate of Ramsey High School in Birmingham. Having completed this important part of his schooling, he entered college at Washington and Lee University from which he graduated four years later summa cum laude. His high marks also entitled him to membership in Phi Beta Kappa honorary fraternity.

Tom Bradford, Jr.'s courtship of Mary Anne Taylor was successful, and the Bradfords are parents of one daughter and two sons. Their grandchildren number seven.

Tom Bradford, Jr., is chairman of the Board of Bradford & Co., Inc. and president of Sunbelt Sweeteners, Inc. Under his leadership, Bradford & Co., a food brokerage firm, has grown from nine employees to more than a hundred, serving six states.

The demands on his time from his own affairs have not kept him from sharing his leadership abilities with other economic endeavors in the community which have invited him to become a member of their Boards of Directors. He is a member of the Board of Directors of SouthTrust Bank of Alabama and Briarwood Christian School. He also served as an elder of Briarwood Presbyterian Church as well as being a Sunday school teacher and member of the choir.

His willingness to pay his civic duties has involved him in many ventures established for the good of the inhabitants of the area in which he lives and works. He answers the calls for service from the Chamber of Commerce, the Boy Scouts of America, Camp Fire Girls, United Way, Rotary Club, and Campus Crusade for Christ. He is currently Chairman of the Board of the United Way of Central Alabama. In 1989, he helped found and then served five years as Chairman of the Board for The Alabama Family Alliance, a public policy research and education "think tank."

Tom Bradford is a firm believer in one's duty to one's family. He believes that the family that worships together stays together.