Tribute to Thomas Gilliam

Few people work for and share their many talents with the same company for 50 years. Thomas Gilliam, Chairman and CEO of the Mutual of America Foundation, achieved that incredible distinction on July 12, 2021, six weeks before his planned retirement at the end of August.

Thomas joined Mutual of America in 1971 as a Senior Claims Clerk in the Finance department. His career quickly progressed, taking him to Chicago and growing field office management responsibilities. He returned to Mutual of America’s headquarters in 1987, where he assumed increasingly senior leadership roles for the Company’s marketing and sales operations. In 1996, Thomas was appointed Chairman and CEO of the Mutual of America Foundation, beginning what he refers to as “his second career.”

During his tenure as Chairman and CEO of the Mutual of America Foundation, Thomas helped to define a new era of corporate social responsibility and strategic philanthropy, the central goal of which is to help build stronger communities for all. Few projects better exemplify the transformative power of giving than the Mutual of America Community Partnership Award, which he helped to spearhead and sustain over its first 26 years.

To Thomas Gilliam, people matter most—along with their ability to create a better life for themselves, their loved ones and others. Each year, he crisscrossed the country to better understand and champion the critical work that the Community Partnership Award-winning organizations and their programs are doing to reinforce the social safety net for their communities’ most in-need residents.

We all benefited greatly from Thomas Gilliam’s deep compassion and his steadfast commitment to address difficult issues and strengthen communities throughout the U.S. And while we will all miss his wisdom and understated good humor, we wish him all the best as he writes the next chapter in his remarkable life.

Thomas Gilliam, Retired Chairman and CEO, Mutual of America Foundation
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