Tom Tom Founders Festival | Charlottesville, VA

Tom Tom Founders Festival

Goals of the project

  1. Mission – 1) Celebrate 2) Connect Resources 3) Leave Legacies.
    Tom Tom’s mission is to celebrate and empower the founders of creative, civic, and entrepreneurial projects.

  2. About - The Tom Tom Foundation exists to inspire a future for Charlottesville that sparks a new generation of Founders and contemporary innovators, who shape the future of Charlottesville, and the nation.

How is it being executed

  1. History - Tom Tom Founders Festival was launched in 2012 as a month-long music, art, and innovation festival. In the following and subsequent years, Tom Tom condensed the programming to a week while continuing to expand its multi-disciplinary offerings. To date, the Festival has attracted over 128,000 attendees, and featured 300 bands, 350 speakers, and dozens of artists and installations. Over $2,800,000 has been invested and granted to regional startups, entrepreneurs, and nonprofits.

  2. Staff & Board - Tom Tom is a non-profit that relies on tremendous dedication from a handful of staff and dozens of community collaborators that sit on our boards and committees. Not listed here are the hundreds of community members who volunteer their time and services, but who are no less essential to Tom Tom's success.

What are the results:

  1. Founding Cville Project - The Founding Cville project highlights local founders whose groundbreaking and original work has impacted Charlottesville and the world. Honorees include artists, civic leaders, and entrepreneurs. Each Founder is featured on a lamppost banner along the Downtown Mall for the month of September and is honored at Tomtoberfest, our fall block party.

  2. Mural Project - In 2016, the Tom Tom Mural Project entered its third year, engaging local and regional artists at multiple sites throughout Charlottesville. The murals were created during the week of festival and inspired people to reimagine their city and neighborhoods as opportunities for creativity and expression.

  3. City Art Bus - Now entering its third year, the City Art Bus is a collaborative project between Tom Tom and Charlottesville Area Transit (CAT). The annual bus is a key component of Tom Tom’s City as Canvas initiative which reimagines underused spaces as creative opportunities for public art.

    Learn More

    Paul Beyer
    Founder & Director
    Tom Tom Founders Festival

    Kristin Szakos
    City of Charlottesville, VA