Tom Spears was born in 1962 in Indianapolis, Indiana. He attended Purdue University, where he obtained a bachelors degree in Engineering Science in 1986. In 1991, Tom was awarded a masters degree in business administration from Harvard University.
He began his career at Harrison Radiator division of General Motors (now part of Delphi) as a manufacturing engineer. While at Harrison, Tom also worked in Product Engineering and Production Supervision.
In 1993, Tom accepted a position at Emerson Electric Corporation as a Strategic Planner. Over the next four years he held positions as Manager of Strategic Planning for the Process Control Group, Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Strategic Planning for Rosemount Analytical Liquid division, and President of Rosemount Analytical Liquid division.
Tom moved to Valmont Industries in 1998 as President of the Global Irrigation Division. Seven years later, he was promoted to Group President of North American Lighting and Traffic, Coatings and Specialty Structures. For a time, Tom also had responsibility for the Wind Energy business, prior to Valmont's decision to close that unit.
In 2009, Tom accepted a position at Lindsay Manufacturing as President of Infrastructure. He subsequently resigned from that position early in 2010.
Since that time, Tom has been nurturing his interest in writing. He has authored five novels (Leverage, Incentivize, Deliverables, Heir Apparent, and Pursuing Other Opportunities), and one non-fiction business book (Navigating Corporate Politics). He has several other writing projects underway.
Tom also does occasional strategic, manufacturing, and M&A consulting work. He is the part owner of a small manufacturing firm in Fremont, Nebraska (TEK Services), and tried teaching business strategy for a semester at Creighton University (which he didn't repeat).
He has been married to Paula Spears since 1986, and the couple has seven children: Kenneth, Emily, Anna, Sarah, Candace, Feyissa Thomas and Carlisle Fitsum. The four youngest children were adopted from Ethiopia.
Tom is an avid runner, although a knee injury has slowed him down in recent years. He has eight marathon races under his belt, and hopes to one day add a few more. He is an avid home brewer, most recently exploring various mead styles. He also enjoys reading and traveling -- at last count, Tom had visited more than sixty countries outside of the United States, and forty-nine of the states.
Sarah's Self- Portrait (age six)
Candace's Self-Portrait (age six)