Tom Mellor has been a Certified Scrum Trainer since 2008 and was mentored by Scrum co-creator Ken Schwaber. Tom assumed the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Scrum Alliance following Ken's resignation in 2009. He served on the Board at 2008 through September 2010.
Tom introduced Scrum into the custom software development department of his Fortune 50 employer in early 2004. He was involved in over 50 projects that used Scrum as the framework for development. He trained over 1,000 employees of the company as Certified ScrumMasters and coached and assisted many more in being agile and using Scrum. Tom retired from the company after a 22 year career in both business and IT. He has been working in business in some capacity since 1978.
Tom grew up in Montana and now resides in Bloomington, IL with his family - wife Maryann and children Lindsey, Kristen, and Amanda, and dog, Penny. Tom enjoys helping people discover and use modern software product development methods and his purpose is to help others find joy in their work and improve their work environment, their processes, and themselves. He likes to remind people that Orville Wright did not have a pilot's license and no one should be inhibited or prevented from being happy and creative.
Tom prefers the same title that Gordon MacKenzie had at Hallmark Cards: "Creative Paradox." He also believes everyone would benefit from and enjoy reading MacKenzie's gem: Orbiting the Giant Hairball: A Corporate Fool's Guide to Surviving with Grace.
Braintrust Consulting Group, Senior Trainer and Agile Coach
July 2013 - Present, Birmingham, AL
Coach and train companies and their people in the effective use of Scrum and the nuances of an agile culture and work environment. Speak at user groups, conferences, and gatherings about Scrum, leadership, modern management paradigm, effective product development and product management principles and practices.
State Farm Insurance, Scrum Trainer and Coach
April 1992 - June 2013, Bloomington, IL 61704, United States
Joined the IT department in October 2001 after spending 20 years in the business side of insurance. In March 2003, became a project manager and in February 2004 introduced Scrum into the department in a single project. Helped grow the use of Scrum for the next 9+ years and worked on over 50 Scrum projects as a ScrumMaster, Dev Team member, or Coach. Spoke at conferences and Scrum Gatherings throughout the world about the use of Scrum at State Farm. Trained directly with Ken Schwaber to become a Certified Scrum Trainer and accepted his invitation to become a Scrum Alliance Director in March 2008. In September 2009, I assumed Chairmanship of the Scrum Alliance Board following Ken Schwaber's resignation. I remained in that position until September 2009, when Mike Cohn took over for me. I trained many classes - public and private - on my own time while with State Farm. I retired from State Farm on June 1 after 20.5 years of service.
Articles I've written
Leadership Reading List
Part of what makes a good leader great is a commitment to continuous improvement. These are the “must-reads” for every leader (or potential leader). What’s on your bookshelf?
What Can We Do About (Or Perhaps Better, For) Our Managers?
I owe the title of this piece to Alistair Cockburn, who several years ago wrote a favorite article of mine for Cutter IT Journal entitled “What Can We Do About Our Project Managers?”# I think it remains a relevant read today. In it, Al...