Team Members

Jacob Sobell, CW21

WOSTEP Certified Watchmaker / Instructor

With a family history of watchmakers dating back over a hundred years, it was only a matter of time before I found my passion. I began my career in the jewelry industry working in the engraving department at my family’s jewelry store.  While working for Mosher’s Jewelers, I began my watchmaker training at the CPC School of Horology in Sterling Heights, Michigan in 2000. After 2 years of training, I earned my Horology Certificate in Watch and Clock Repair. During, my schooling at C.P.C., I also apprenticed with a local watchmaker, Jamie Dolinar. It was there I learned the "in's and out's" of wholesale watch repair.

After finishing my education in Michigan in 2002, I was accepted into the Watchmakers of Switzerland Training and Educational Program (WOSTEP) 3000hr Program at the prestigious Lititz Watch Technicum (LWT) in Lititz, Pennsylvania.  While at LWT, I relearned watchmaking at the highest level. The extensive micro-mechanical education I received there serves me well with every restoration I perform. I graduated from L.W.T. in 2004 with not only the WOSTEP 3000hr Certificate but also the LWT Diploma having completed the making of my own “school watch” as well as significant repair and restoration projects above and beyond the WOSTEP curriculum.

After LWT, I took a position as Head Watchmaker at a high-end watch retailer in Bloomington, MN. I completed my American Watchmakers-Clockmakers Institute CW21 exam in the fall of 2004 and worked closely with numerous high-end watch brands as well as the collector community from 2004 – 2008.

While there, I also completed specialized training courses from Cartier, Breitling and Panerai.

After more than 8 years of providing precision timekeeping and repair in the retail environment it was time to move on. I now apply those same standards from years of experience with today’s most prestigious brands to repairing museum-grade antique timepieces for the discerning collector. I opened my own business (J.M.S. Watch Werks, LLC) consulting collectors, designing repair shops, restoring museum grade timepieces and designing custom handmade watches. 

In 2009, I was brought on board at Saint Paul College (SPC) to teach in their watchmaking program and traveled to Switzerland for WOSTEP’s “Train the Trainers” course for teachers.   At SPC, we prepare the next generation of watchmakers for their WOSTEP final exam as well as the AWCI CW21 exam. During my time at SPC, the class average on the WOSTEP Final has drastically increased each year.

In January of 2011, I took on my first apprentice at JMS Watch Werks, in an effort both to expand our level of service and give back to the watchmaking profession.

In March of 2011, I headed to New Jersey to keep current with my Swatch Parts Account. I attended a week long Service Provider training course at the Swatch Group Service Center in
Secaucus, NJ. The training covered Omega service practices as well as training and theory of the co-axial escapement currently in use in Omega watches.

Jeremy Grace
Student / Apprentice
Jeremy is a 2nd year watch repair student at St. Paul College. He is expected to complete his WOSTEP (Watchmakers of Switzerland Technical and Educational Program) 3000hr Certificate mid-November 2011 and continue working toward his CW21 certification from the American Watchmaker-Clockmaker Institute in December. His attention to detail and problem solving skills will be a good addition here at J.M.S. Watch Werks

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