President & CEO
Tom Busch joined the U. S. Navy Reserve as a senior in high-school, and served as a member of the combat information center (CIC) team during his active-duty. His ship, the USS Allagash, had the dangerous task of supplying fuel and ammunition to ships at sea.While on active duty, his ship had the privilege traveling nonstop from Newport, Rhode Island to Port Elizabeth, South Africa during Senator Robert Kennedy’s historic South African tour.
In a later Mediterranean deployment, Tom was severely injured in an on-duty accident in Augusta Bay, Sicily and later became a life member of the Disabled American Veterans (DAV).
Prior to establishing Allagash Group in 2006, Tom was appointed Deputy Chief Operating Officer of the Disabled Veterans’ Life Memorial Foundation (charged under Public Law 106-348) to design, construct and permanently endow a National memorial to commemorate the sacrifices of disabled members of America’s Armed Forces. Tom managed the required protocols and provided leadership in negotiating site access issues with the Office of Speaker of the House of Representatives.
He also served as the liaison to the National Park Service, the memorial’s sponsor under law. The American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial now under construction in Washington, DC. Tom was also appointed the Senior Vice President of the Armed Forces Veterans Homes Foundation in 2001, providing leadership in establishing a funded research program to advance knowledge of the needs of elderly and infirm veterans requiring long-term care.
Over a 20 year period, Tom worked for two large state university systems with significant international programs in Illinois and Maryland. His career encompassed considerable focus in the area of student/alumni relations. His knowledge base includes: recruitment, admissions, financial aid, career counseling, general academic administration and fundraising.
The range of programs included undergraduate, graduate, and professional schools i.e. law, medicine, dentistry, and nursing. He worked extensively with national and international college/school alumni organizations and created outreach programs in support of institutional development.Tom is a graduate of Southern Illinois University with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and a minor in History. His professional work includes becoming a Certified Association Executive (CAE) and a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE).