Tom May’s Bio

Tom grew up as one of seven children in Sandusky, Ohio, home of the historic amusement park Cedar Point on Lake Erie, which offered Tom exciting summer employment throughout high school and college. His college years were spent in Cleveland, where he graduated from John Carroll University magna cum laude with a B.S. in Economics in 1972. As graduation approached, the Vietnam War was still raging and the military draft underway, so Tom chose the U.S. Navy as his post-college path to fulfill his military service commitment.

This choice led to a unique opportunity as a commissioned Navy Supply Corps officer assigned to the Washington, DC headquarters for the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program led by the legendary Admiral Hyman G. Rickover. During his time as a financial analyst at Naval Reactors, he also served in a collateral capacity as a speech writer and research assistant for Admiral Rickover on the subject of public education. Upon fulfillment of his military service commitment in 1977, Tom stayed with the Naval Reactors program as a civil servant and became Admiral Rickover’s financial field representative at the Naval Reactors Facility in Idaho, where he worked for six years.

In 1985, Tom made a major career change to pursue his life long love of music and returned east with his family to take the position of Chief Financial Officer for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, a role that was both challenging and satisfying with its combination of finance and music. In 1996, the Boston Symphony Orchestra invited Tom to leave one BSO for another to become the CFO of one of the great orchestral organizations in the world, with its multi-faceted operations including its revered orchestra, Symphony Hall in Boston, the Boston Pops, and the BSO’s summer home, Tanglewood, located in the Berkshire hills of Western Massachusetts. Tom spent 22 rewarding years as CFO for the Boston Symphony, before retiring at the end of 2017 to pursue a very different chapter of life - retirement in the beautiful and welcoming community of Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia, Canada.

Tom’s involvement in personal technology started in 1981 with the purchase of Apple II+ computer. In 1984 the Macintosh was introduced with that unforgettable Super Bowl ad. Not long after, Tom bought one of the first 128K Macs to roll off the assembly line and has never looked back. Although the Macintosh’s arrival was greeted by much of the tech community with claims that it was “just a toy” and in the years following, the tech press often sounded the death knell for Apple as a company, Apple has to become the most successful technology companies of all time. Tom’s four decades of personal experience with all aspects of the Apple ecosystem, as well as his years as a CFO with oversight responsibility for Information Technology departments, are the basis for “A Digital Life Examined”.