Tom was born in Hagerstown, Maryland in 1948. After high school he attended Hagerstown Community College, Columbus College of Art and Design and Shepherd College. In the middle of his college education he served in the United States Air Force during the Vietnam War from 1969-72. After being discharged, he completed his education at Shepherd College with a Bachelor's Degree in Art Education K-12. In 1981, he received a Master's Degree in Secondary Education from the University of Maryland.
Tom taught art for the Washington County Public Schools for 40 years. During the second half of his career, he was also an adjunct professor in art at Hagerstown Community College. He retired from teaching in July 2015. Being a full-time painter was always his dream and now in retirement he has the time to really concentrate on production. Teaching and supporting a family for all of those years left little time for painting, but he did as much as possible and has always exhibited in local shows. He always viewed himself as an artist first and foremost, an artist that made a living teaching.
There has always been a variation of styles in his work. Symbolism, Realism and some abstraction have been a part of his repertoire. Regardless of subject matter or artistic style, it is his intention to reach beyond design and technique and to create a sense of the spiritual and serendipity between himself and his work and between the work and the viewer.
His work is mainly done with acrylics but he is also comfortable working with oils and watercolor.