This month we’re highlighting GED® State Relationship Manager Thomas Ross in our Q&A feature.

What does a typical work day look like for you?

A typical day is filled with international intrigue, helping people break out of prison, and ensuring domestic tranquility.  OK, maybe that’s a little dramatic – but it does describe the myriad of clients I help on a daily basis. I work with clients across all of Canada, Federal and state Corrections, as well as Vermont, Delaware, Mississippi, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Oklahoma.

How long have you been working with GED Testing Service?

I have been with GED Testing Service nearly 4 years.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

I get to help people!  Sometimes it’s helping people by connecting them to testing resources, sometimes it’s by connecting folks to teaching resources, and sometimes it’s just about connecting the right people to get things done.

What kind of work did you do before coming to GED Testing Service?

I’ve worked in project and program management in the education field for the last 15 years.  I was also in the Iowa Army National Guard for 26 years as a musician in the 34th Army Band, mostly playing trumpet.

Where is your hometown?

Fairfield, Iowa. To my knowledge, the most famous person to come from Fairfield was Hall of Fame baseball broadcaster Milo Hamilton. I currently live in Iowa City, Iowa.

Favorite travel spot?

Minneapolis. I live within a 4-5 hour drive of most Midwestern cities, but Minneapolis is always where I seem to have the most fun. In the summer, preferably!

What kinds of hobbies and interests do you have outside of work?

I have an 8 year old daughter, so most of my hobbies and interests are somewhat kiddo-centric.  I think our favorite thing is going to the local board game shop and trying out new games.

If you were stuck on an island what three things would you bring?

My guitar, Warren Ellis’ Planetary Omnibus, and a very comfortable camping chair.  Making music, reading, and sitting comfortably would hopefully cover everything I need.

What was your favorite toy as a child?

My Atari 2600. Old school gaming!

Who is the best teacher you ever had? Why?

Dr. Cate Palczewski when I was an undergraduate at the University of Northern Iowa.  She was brilliant, funny, tough, and forced you to think outside your comfort zone. I wouldn’t be who I am today without her.

What are two things still on your bucket list?

I haven’t been to London yet – that’s a must-have.  And I also haven’t figured out how to be part of the horn section in a They Might Be Giants concert…yet. Someday…