|Tom was born in Manhattan to leftist parents and with little exposure to Jewish life as a child. He lived in Bronx until 7, moved to Larchmont and lived there until his parents moved to New Rochelle in 1961. Went to Mamaroneck High and graduated in 1961. Attended University of Rochester 1961-1965, spent junior year abroad in Paris 1963-64 and graduated with a degree in Linguistics/French. He did a variety of things after college, ranging from travel around the world, to joining the Navy and working in Cuba as a computer programmer. He graduated with degree in Biomechanical Engineering in 1975 and medicine in 1978. He moved back to Westchester in Feb 1987 to start private practice in infectious diseases where he continues to practice with activity at multiple hospitals in Northern Westchester. He is married to Dawn Payne, also now a physician and has two children.|
Regarding his interest in AJC, he writes “I was visiting friends in Southern France on Sept 11, 1991 and experienced first hand the reaction of (left leaning) Europeans to the events and, after returning to the United States 2 or 3 weeks later began a slow and long transformation of my political views influenced largely by these impressions and extensive reading in the areas of politics, history and Jewish studies. I have fostered a strong sense of Jewish identity in myself and family and have tried to fill in some of the gaps in my Jewish upbringing since that time although, initially, I was more oriented in defending the United States against what I saw as its demonization by Europeans. I have since realized that hatred of Israel goes hand in hand with hatred of the United States. I come to the AJC having identified this organization as providing me the best opportunity of defending both the USA and Israel and Jews in the company of committed, like-minded people"