In Memoriam: Thomas “Tom” Patrick Carroll
Tom Carroll, a 35-plus year industry sales and business development veteran and strategic marketing professional, was born May 25, 1960 in Stuttgart, Germany to Bennie J. and Monika Margarethe Carroll. He died from complications related to his battle with cancer on Sept. 17, 2021 in Fort Wayne, Indiana, his hometown for many years, surrounded by loved ones.
One of Tom’s first jobs in the industry included packing pencils when he lived in Shelbyville, Tennessee. He grew to love the promotional products industry and flourished in various sales, marketing and executive positions with a wide variety of supplier companies. Tom’s excitement for, and grasp of, new technologies led him to guide a great many supplier firms in the realms of web and social media marketing, along with more traditional marketing plans and options. He founded the first industry exclusive job board, PromoGigs.com, and grew into a premier consultant to many industry firms. In his later years, Tom shared commitment to the industry with a strong foray into the advertising agency sector.
Tom was blessed with a beautiful daughter, Delaney, whom he loved beyond words, and he never tired of touting her many talents and accomplishments.
A true Eagle Scout, Tom was always willing to share his knowledge and skills, mentoring many young and seasoned promotional product professionals. As one close friend and beneficiary of Tom’s mentoring, Scott Lange of Lange Marketing (Aakron Line) advised, “Tom was quick to extend a warm handshake and hug just before asking, ‘how you doing’ – Tom remembered your kids’ names, hometowns and small details about everyone he ever met, and he genuinely cared about his friends in the industry, all of whom will greatly miss his forward-thinking, authentic enthusiasm and laughter.”
“Tom always brought new perspectives and detailed analysis to projects or opportunities,” said longtime friend and colleague, Mary Kilburn of DinoMar. “And he always kept us on track with best practices and the latest technologies. That twinkle in his eye was a signal that he had something exciting to share, and he used his wry humor to cajole rather than correct any missteps we may have been taking. Even through his struggles in these past few months, his drive kept the rest of us on our game. We will truly miss our long-distance cocktails, think tanks, and, most importantly, the love and care of a true friend.”
Tom gave generously of his time, talents and resources to many worthy organizations — volunteering, counseling and, of course, providing many promotional products to help those organizations gain exposure, support and donations. In Tom’s spirit of giving, memorials may be made to The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society in Northeast Indiana.
Tom is survived by his daughter Delaney Carroll of Fort Wayne, Indiana; parents Bennie J. and Monika Margarethe Carroll of Madison, Alabama; and brother Chris Carroll of Denver; as well as countless friends and admirers.
A Celebration of Life will be shared at a later date. Sign the online guestbook here.