Tom’s areas of expertise are museum management, exhibition development, and contemporary art. Tom has strong ties to the Los Angeles fine arts community and is a veteran nonprofit manager well versed in legal, financial, governance, personnel, and public relations matters.
Tom grew up in Portland, OR and graduated from Reed College and New York University. Tombegan his career in the early 1980s as a program and financial officer in the Visual Arts Division of the New York State Council on the Arts, concentrating on contemporary visual arts organizations.
In 1988 he moved to California to become the founding executive director of the Santa Monica Museum of Art. He created the organizational structure for the museum, developed its programs and exhibitions, and presided over the move into its home at the Bergamot Station arts center.
Tom joined the Getty in 2000, where he served as the Associate Director for Administration of the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles. During a tenure of a dozen years, he was responsible for the daily operations of the Getty, including formulating and implementing policies and procedures in budget, operations, personnel, and general management.
In 2015 Tom was appointed interim director of The Menil Collection in Houston, December 2015 – July 2016.
Tom is currently the co-executor for the Estate of Lyn Keinholz. Lyn was a tireless supporter of Los Angeles artists. Her obit in the Los Angeles Times includes quotes from Tom and is worth reading for insights into him: https://www.latimes.com/entertainment/arts/la-et-cm-lyn-kienholz-obit-20190126-story.html. Tom has close ties to many of the fine arts communities in Los Angeles, including to living artists.