Following military service during World War II aboard a destroyer in the Pacific Theatre, Tom King entered Penn State and earned the B.S. and M.S. degrees in Animal Husbandry. He later earned a Ph.D. in Animal Science at the University of Illinois.
From 1965 to 1970 he served as Head of the Department of Animal Science. Thereafter, he was appointed Assistant Director of Penn State 's Cooperative Extension Service and the following year became Associate Dean for Extension in the College of Agriculture. He retired on October 1, 1985 with thirty-five years in Penn State 's College of Agriculture.
In addition to being a long time guide, Tom provided wisdom and guidance in the development of the museum advisory board, and for the past several years has served as a volunteer professional photographer for museum activities.
During his professional career Tom King made major contributions to Pennsylvania 's and the nation's livestock industry. In 1981 the Department of Animal Science presented him with its Distinguished Alumnus Award. Epsilon Sigma Phi, the National Extension Fraternity, gave him their Distinguished Service Award in 1986. A member of the national agricultural fraternity, Delta Theta Sigma, he received their Outstanding Alumnus Award in 1974.