In Memory of




Obituary for Thomas J Stevens

Thomas (Tom) J. Stevens of Lexington and Martha’s Vineyard, MA and Los Angeles, CA passed away suddenly on October 23, 2021, at the age of 55. Tom was predeceased by his father James Stevens of Marietta, GA; and he is survived by his mother Dorothy C. Stevens of Lexington; Bill Stevens of Stockbridge, GA; Catherine Stevens of Canton, GA; Janice Justice and her husband Rob of Lexington; Paula Boland and her husband Rich of Jacksonville, FL; Maureen Surette and her husband David of Gloucester, MA; Michael Stevens and his wife Carolyn of Lexington. He is also survived by 14 nieces and
nephews and five grandnieces and grandnephews.

Tom was born at Symmes Hospital in Arlington, MA on November 16, 1965, and he was raised in Lexington and Marietta, GA. He studied Communications at Northeastern University, and, in 1991, he discovered the school’s television studio, which led him to add a concentration in television and film to his studies. This new-found passion drove Tom to spend many days and nights mastering all the equipment in the studio. Later that year, the studio installed an Avid Media Composer digital editing system, which was a new and exciting technology. Tom immediately saw it as the future and became proficient with the system. Over the next two years, Avid took the video world by storm.

1994, Tom moved to Los Angeles to join a start-up Avid editing system provider for feature films. This was at the dawn of the digital editing era when Hollywood made the move from traditional film-based editing to digital editing. Tom spent countless hours in the cutting/editing rooms supporting the systems and working with many Academy Award winning, producers, directors, and editors. Some of the films Tom worked were As Good as it Gets, Jackie Brown, Mulholland Drive, Titanic and Waiting for Guffman.

1999, Tom founded Orbit Digital West in Santa Monica. The company was a subsidiary of start-up Orbit Digital in New York. Tom partnered with Orbit Digital to give the company a bi-coastal presence and to target the feature film market in Los Angeles. Tom glided into sales, marketing, emerging technologies and a business development role. Within a year the company was a powerhouse providing systems to all the major studios and production companies.

In 2006, Tom moved back to Lexington to seek treatment and be close to family while recovering from complications related to a serious mountain biking accident in Malibu, California.

In 2009, Tom moved to Martha's Vineyard and began doing freelance creative work using his skills in web and graphic design, photography and video production. He also focused on the trends and technologies related to video, internet, social media, marketing and the principles of search engine optimization. He was also an accomplished composer, musician, recording engineer, sound designer and audio mixer.

Tom also worked for many years at American Architectural Co., Inc. in Tewksbury, MA, where he automated the company’s equipment to produce millwork according to the specifications of architectural drawings.

Tom adored his mother, and she has spent her life as Tom’s number one supporter, and she would do anything in her power to help him when he needed anything. Tom also deeply loved his brothers and sisters, brothers-in-law, sister-in-law, his nieces and nephews and his beloved Yorkshire Terrier Phoenix who predeceased him. Anyone who knew Tom knows that his passion for his family, friends, music (specifically his love over the years for KISS, Led Zeppelin and U2 immediately come to mind), Tom Brady and the New England Patriots, photography and dogs was also countered by his long-term struggles with mental health issues and substance use disorder. We hope that family and friends will remember Tom when he brought joy, laughter, love and big smiles, kisses and hugs into their lives. Peace be with you, Tom.