VP of Engineering
Tom Barker currently holds the position of VP of Engineering at Thrillworks, a highly successful digital accelerator based in Toronto. He actively leads a team of over 40 engineers and plays a pivotal role in driving the company’s latest initiatives, which encompass Data Science, Cloud Native solutions, and the Internet of Things. Established by visionary founders 24 years ago, Thrillworks specializes in delivering cutting-edge Websites, Apps, and Content Management systems. Remarkably, it serves an impressive roster of clients, including industry giants such as Loblaws, Tim Hortons, Yamaha, Manulife, Abbott Health, and Spin Masters, all of whom heavily rely on its services.
Tom possesses extensive experience in both the commercial and academic realms, where the seamless integration of technology with people and culture, innovation, learning, collaboration, diversity, and sustainability takes center stage. On a daily basis, he actively applies his change management skills in the fast-paced tech sector. Within the commercial sector, Tom has made significant contributions by successfully delivering innovation projects valued at over $50 million for esteemed clients. His wide-reaching publications and prominent media presence, including appearances on globally recognized platforms such as CNN and the UK’s Channel 4, underscore his influence. Notably, Tom authored ‘The Full Stack Web App Playbook,’ a groundbreaking textbook published by McGrawHill in 2019. This comprehensive guide outlines digital execution strategies for businesses, encompassing AI, omnichannel marketing, and progressive web apps.
Tom’s academic journey runs parallel to his illustrious commercial career, featuring roles as a Research Professor, a Founding Chair in Digital, and a Dean of Technology. In this capacity, he has skillfully organized multimillion-dollar industry sponsorships and engaged in impactful consulting work. Tom’s early pioneering contributions shine through, particularly in his leadership role in developing capsule and boarding system technology for the $92 million London Eye Ferris Wheel project during his tenure at Arup Engineers. His academic credentials include a 1st class degree from the University of Edinburgh and graduate degrees from Cambridge University and the Royal College of Art in partnership with Imperial College London. Additionally, he proudly holds the distinguished title of Fellow of the Royal Society for the Arts, which further underscores his remarkable achievements and contributions to society.