Tom Healy was raised on a farm in Mount Vision, New York. He earned a BA in philosophy from Harvard University and an MFA in creative writing from Columbia University. His first collection of poetry, What the Right Hand Knows (2009), was a finalist for the L.A. Times Book Award and the Lambda Literary Award in Poetry.
Of Healy’s spare yet evocative poems, poet Carol Muske-Dukes commented in the Huffington Post: “From the near-cheerful merciless poems about childhood on a farm and the brutal lives of animals to big city glamour with new possibilities of flight from a flawed paradise—there is the sharp edge of art … keeping things in perspective.”
Healy has been a leader in the arts, international affairs, and philanthropy throughout his career. Active in the New York City arts scene, Healy operated a gallery in Chelsea with Pat Hearn and Matthew Marks from 1994 until 2000. He has been executive director of the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, a member of President Clinton’s White House Council on AIDS, and a visiting fellow at the Gorée Institute in Dakar, Senegal. He currently serves as chairman of the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board, which oversees the Fulbright program worldwide. He was appointed to the Fulbright board by President Barack Obama.
Healy has taught at the Pratt Institute, New York University, and the New School, as well as the New York State Writers Institute, the Port Townsend Writers Conference, and the John Ashbery School of Poetics. He has a regular column in the Huffington Post and is a contributing editor to BOMB Magazine, Creative Time Reports, and ArtInfo.com.