In high school, a mentor asked Thomas what his purpose was in life. Thomas wrote down “To help people with music”. That phrase has been the seed that has grown into who he is today. Along the way, Thomas has been an explorer of life, pursuing different passions and ideas in order to understand what his purpose is on this planet. From living in a tent in the woods, to working and living on an organic farm, he has followed his passions wherever they led him.
The path eventually led him to music and psychology. He began to explore being a professional musician and composer, but realized that this was not the path for him. He went back to school for psychology, and worked as a Residential Counselor for adults with mental health disorders.
Through the experience of being a counselor, Thomas fully realized his passion for holding space for people and helping guide them to their fullest potential. He eventually returned to music, and found teaching, which allowed him to use his talents as both a counselor and a musician in order to help people.
This led him to found Everyone’s Music School, with the mission to create positive and lasting change in people’s lives using music education. Using the skills he refined as a counselor, he coaches and trains his teachers at the music school to help them build real connections with their students, and to show them how to truly find a place where music can live within them.
As a mixed-race black man who was raised in a white conservative family in a small, white majority town, race has always been part of Thomas’s identity, but it was not until 2018 that he started to look more deeply at the issue. He finally began to explore what blackness was, and his own history.
In 2019 he attended an event called “The Unapologetically Black Art Show”, which would be a turning point in his life. The night was an awakening for him, making him aware of a part of himself he had been suppressing for his whole life. He signed up that night to go to Selma, Alabama, to be trained as a Kingian nonviolence trainer, as well as to gain a greater understanding of black culture in the USA.
During his trip, he learned a lot about the culture of this country, as well as a lot about black history that he had not been taught in school. He came back with a mission to help fight systemic racism in the US using the tools of MLK, Gandhi and Thoreau.
This experience influenced him to start Speak For Change Podcast, with the mission to inspire and promote positive change and growth in the world. The podcast is centered around in-depth conversations with leaders, activists, artists, and other people who are in the arena of life, actively doing things to promote positive change.
Thomas currently lives with his wife in the Santa Cruz Mountains. He is The CEO/Founder of Everyone’s Music School, Founder & Host of Speak For Change Podcast, a Kingian Nonviolence Trainer, A member of the Steering committee for The Santa Cruz County Black Coalition of Racial Justice and Equity, A member of the SC Equity Collab , writer, mentor, Artist and Speaker
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