Tom’s career began at a weekly newspaper in New York in 1983. Since, he has worked for 7 daily newspapers. Specializing in data collection and analysis, he is currently an investigative reporter for the Bay Area News Group, publishers of newspapers surrounding San Francisco. A recipient of over 50 journalism awards, Tom holds a bachelor’s in journalism and a master's in creative writing. He lectures at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism & co-teaches a class on public-records reporting. Tom says, "work life changed radically after the 2007 murder of a man I'd never met.” Chauncey Bailey, the editor of a weekly newspaper in Oakland, was working on an article about an organization called Your Black Muslim Bakery and the cult behind it. A group of journalists (Tom was one) incensed by lack of attention Bailey’s murder received, joined together in a loosely formed association they named The Chauncey Bailey Project. The tragedy of this case is chronicled in Killing the Messenger.