We believe in connecting communities & sharing solutions.
Building strong communities starts with collaboration and connection. By uniting civic leaders, entrepreneurs, artists, and engaged citizens around a shared vision for their cities, we strive to foster thriving and inclusive hometowns.
Tom Tom began in the spring of 2012 as a community festival — an attempt to bring people together to celebrate the creativity and entrepreneurship of Charlottesville, Virginia. The following year, the Tom Tom Foundation (a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization) was formed to steward the event and expand its focus to a fuller suite of themes required to make flourishing, opportunity-filled hometowns, including education, health, data, climate, and justice.
We believe finding solutions relies on having conversations, and that’s what we do best. By bringing multi-sector leaders together to discuss the innovative (and often undersung) solutions happening across the country, we’re helping facilitate the collaborative path forward that cities need most.
The Summit &
Our annual Summit brings together hundreds of leaders from ambitious cities across the country to share big ideas and tactical solutions for the future of industry and civic life. Our concurrent Festival is Charlottesville’s biggest party of the year, celebrating our host city with music, art, and community programs.
It all adds up to an unrivaled celebration of big ideas at work in the hometowns driving our country’s future.
With our 2020 in-person events on hold, we pivoted our spring Summit and Festival to a completely virtual, seven-week deep dive into the most pressing issues facing small cities. Learn more about these explorations into justice reform, healthcare equity, small business vitality, community arts, education equity, data for good, and more here:
Our focus on America's cities:
When we talk about “ambitious cities,” we’re pointing to the small and medium-sized cities—those with populations fewer than one million who account for roughly 97 million Americans or a third of our country—who we believe are underserved when it comes to access to peer-scaled solutions. Tom Tom strives to deliver the collaboration and connections necessary to create those solutions, both in person at our annual flagship event and year-round through ancillary programs, newsletters, and online events.
The story of our hometown of Charlottesville, Virginia is a complicated one, but it’s as universal as it is unique. Charlottesville is a microcosm for small cities everywhere as we struggle with economic and social inequality, historical contradictions, and enormous structural challenges—issues the events of August 12, 2017 made manifest on the world stage. That Charlottesville has begun to confront its past head-on while actively working toward a more equitable future for all of its residents is a dynamic we’re proud to be a part of.