Thomas R. Smith, dedicated alumnus from the class of 1977, student mentor and long-time member of the King’s College Board of Directors, has been selected as the 2018 recipient of the Rev. James Lackenmier C.S.C., Award for Achievement and Leadership. The award will be presented at a ceremony to be held Thursday, October 18, at the Union League of Philadelphia.
Tom is the vice president of Finance for Campbell’s Snacks and International business, where he has fiscal responsibility for nearly 50-percent of the company’s global revenues. In addition, he is overseeing the financial integration of the recent $6.1 billion Snyder’s-Lance acquisition—the largest in the company’s history.
After earning his B.S. in Accounting, cum laude, from King’s College, Tom began his career as an auditor at Coopers & Lybrand. Then, in 1981, Tom joined The Campbell Soup Company in Camden, NJ, where he has steadily advanced through increasing levels of financial and management responsibilities to where he currently leads a global team of more than 300 finance professionals.
With more than 35-years at Campbell, Tom is a trusted leader who helped solidify the company’s global market presence, while mitigating many of the financial risks associated with these strategic initiatives. He is credited with helping Campbell expand its market throughout the US and Asia-Pacific. As the senior vice president of Finance for Godiva Chocolatier, Inc.—a wholly-owned Campbell subsidiary—Tom helped create the network of Godiva company-owned stores throughout the US, Japan and Hong Kong. Then, in 2014, while vice president of Global Biscuits and Snacks, Tom played the leading finance role in integrating the Kelsen butter cookie business to mainland China—Campbell’s first major brand promoted in the greater China market.
In addition to helping Campbell grow its global market, Tom helped revitalize leading brands and innovate key manufacturing facilities. When Tom was the senior vice president of Finance for Pepperidge Farms, he led the financial team during the launch of the iconic Goldfish Colors and Goldfish Graham Crackers. At the same time, Tom was a champion of and identified the necessary financial resources to construct of a new, state-of-the art bakery facility and to install robotic automation that increased plant-site productivity.
As chief audit executive, Tom worked with Campbell senior management and the Board of Directors to ensure the company’s assets are properly safeguarded and to support the financial success of the Campbell brands that are sold both domestically and globally.
Tom credits the King’s College faculty and staff with instilling in him a belief in himself and in giving-forward to the next generation. “King’s College inspired me to seek more than I thought I could ever achieve. They taught me the importance of hard-work and being committed to excellence and to each other,” said Tom. “These are values I try to share with my team members and to personally live every day.”
King’s College taught Tom the importance of being a mentor, and each year he helps lead and actively participates in the McGowan School of Business Forum where approximately 100 King’s College students have the opportunity to be mentored by business leaders—most of whom are graduates of the College.
In addition to mentoring students, Tom has been a member of its Board of Directors for 23 years—serving in the role of the Chairman of the Board for the past eight years.
Tom is a committed Monarch who leads by example. Despite many demands on his time, Tom seems ever-present on King’s Campus, and he is accessible to King’s students, faculty, and staff. The priests and brothers of the Congregation of Holy Cross play an important role in his life, counting many of these special men as close friends.
A resident of Cherry Hill and Avalon, NJ, Tom enjoys spending his free time at the Jersey Shore with his family, including his 23 nieces and nephews.