Tom Muller moved to Lehigh County in 1990 to take a job as Vice-President and General Manager of Binney and Smith, which later became Crayola. Tom likes to say that he and his wife, “MJ”, moved here for a job, but they ended up finding a home.
Tom was born into a working-class family in Belleville, New Jersey and moved to Morristown, New Jersey when he was entering middle school. He worked his way through college, graduating with Bachelor of Science degrees from both the Business and Journalism schools at Syracuse University. He later received an M.B.A from Fairleigh Dickinson’s evening program, spending long hours working during the day and studying at night.
From his summer job as a card-carrying union longshoreman in Bayonne, New Jersey, through his current position as Lehigh County’s Executive, Tom has always prided himself on his hard work ethic and results-oriented approach to business and life.
Tom has extensive experience in national and international business where he managed or directed marketing and sales for some of the world’s most-recognized brands such as Schick Razors, Listerine, Planters Lifesavers, Crayola, Trident, Dentyne, Rolaids, Halls, Thera-Flu and many others. His successful record of turning around troubled or sluggish business units and brands, launching new products and working with start-up companies has earned him the recognition and respect of the global business community.
After a successful 40 year career in private sector business management and sales, Tom moved into the public sector as Lehigh County’s Director of Administration, a position he held for eight years until running for his current position. He oversaw a budget that was reduced from a high point of $412 million to its current $360 million.
Tom’s leadership role under County Executive Don Cunningham produced two tax rebates, and a bond-rating that was upgraded twice. Working in conjunction with District Attorney Jim Martin, he increased public safety by linking all of the County’s police forces via “real time” technology, opened a digital forensic lab, a central booking facility, and a regional crime center. He also served as the County’s chief negotiator for over a dozen successful union contract negotiations.
Tom has also served as Chairman of Easton Hospital’s Board of Trustees for the past ten years, having been a member of the Board for almost twenty-five years. He also serves on the Board of the Lehigh County Authority and is an adjunct Professor at Cedar Crest College.
Tom and MJ reside in Lower Macungie with their two children--Joy, who attends Lower Macungie Middle School and plays field hockey and “JT”, who is entering his Junior year at Wake Forest University with plans to be a physician. MJ, who runs the kitchen at St. Thomas More School, was also instrumental in the opening “Mary’s Shelter” for unwed mothers in West Bethlehem. Tom also has two married sons and two grandsons, all living in the Carolinas.
Despite an obviously busy life, Tom has committed to reaching out to the citizens of Lehigh County in a variety of ways to make sure that the County’s plans and spending link properly to the needs and desires of the citizens. He plans to attend every municipal meeting at least once each year.