Tom was raised in Fort Scott, Kansas. His father worked in insurance and his mother went back to work in hospital administration after they decided Tom and his sister were old enough to be self-sufficient. The values of hard work, honesty, family, faith, and community were vital components of Tom’s growing up in a small town. “I was raised by parents who taught me that nothing was going to be handed to me. I was expected to work hard and treat people fairly and with honesty. Those are values that I carry with me in everything I do today.”
Tom is married to Debra Doubek, MD. She is a family physician at Stonecreek Family Physicians. She is also board certified in bariatric medicine and serves as the director of the weight management clinic, Mercy Light, at Mercy Regional Health Center. Tom and Debra have two sons. Nathan graduated from KU in biochemistry and from the University of North Carolina’s Gillings School of Global Public Health with a Masters in Health Care Administration. He is working in hospital administration in Denver. Neil graduated from KU with degrees in Genetics and Spanish, and is in medical school at KU in Kansas City.
A proud alum of Kansas State University, Tom graduated with a Bachelors Degree in Geography and a Masters Degree in Regional and Community Planning. In 1992, after serving as Director of Planning & Development for the city of Lenexa, Tom started his own firm, Phillips & Associates. Phillips & Associates provides comprehensive planning and community development services to clients throughout the Midwest. In addition to being a small business owner, Tom has taken on leadership roles within his profession, including serving as President of the Kansas Chapter of the American Planning Association.
Tom’s has also provided significant leadership within the community. He served on the Manhattan City Commission from 2005-09 and as Mayor in 2007. He has also served on the Manhattan Urban Area Planning Board,the Riley County Law Board and as an Adjunct Faculty Member in the Department of Landscape Architecture / Regional and Community Planning at Kansas State University. Additional leadership roles include serving as President of both the United Way of Riley County the Boys and Girls Club of Manhattan. Tom graduated from the Leadership Manhattan program in 2006 and the Flinthills Regional Leadership Program in 2007. He was recognized for his service in 2009 when he was selected Rotarian of Year by the Manhattan Konza Rotary Club.