At the age of 90, Tom died Feb. 3, 2023, in Washington, D.C.

Tom was born in Hanover, N.H., Nov. 7, 1932. He earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Swarthmore in 1954. Tom spent 1955 as a Fulbright scholar at the College of Europe in Bruges, Belgium. He earned a doctorate in political science from Princeton in 1958. 

Tom’s career was in the foreign service. His first posting to Afghanistan was the beginning of an enduring love of the country and its culture. Overseas assignments included Tehran and Tabriz, Iran; Chennai, India; Casablanca, Morocco; Brasilia, Brazil; and Islamabad, Pakistan.

Tom became fluent or conversant in eight languages. His final foreign service assignment was in Washington as deputy special envoy to the Afghan Resistance. 

After retiring from the State Department in 1990, Tom took part in research and advocacy on behalf of Afghanistan, and traveled to Tajikistan and Kazakhstan to see firsthand issues faced by internally displaced persons and refugees in Central Asia. He also worked for the State Department, reviewing documents for declassification.

Tom’s wife of 61 years, Margaret; sisters Eleanor and Katherine; children Meg, Tom, and Marion; and six grandchildren survive him. 

Graduate alumni memorials are prepared by the APGA.

Class Year: 
Undergraduate Class of 1958