Published in 2011, Tom Slone’s Grounders: A Once-in-a-Lifetime Journey of Baseball, History, and Mentoring is a story that not only documents a trip across the country visiting incredible baseball stadiums, but is also a book that explains 33 life-lessons that Tom learned through baseball, business, and life. These lessons include ones on helping, planning, respect, forgiveness, listening, second chances, saying “thank you,” having faith, honesty, consistency, and hard work.
Tom was a dear friend of Gary Randle, Co-Founder of HOPE Farm, and spent over a decade serving on HOPE Farm’s Board of Directors. He led a fund raising campaign that raised 1 million dollars to build the gymnasium that has become the center of programming on the Morningside Campus. Tom also introduced Sacher Dawson (Current Executive Director) and Leon Potter (Director of the Dallas campus) to HOPE Farm as volunteers over two decades ago. Tom was a connector of great people doing great things.
When Tom passed away suddenly on September 29, 2018, there was at least one plan for HOPE Farm that he did not see happen: the building of a vocational center that would teach the boys various trades and equip them for life as a man as well as possible careers.
Last year, Tom’s wife Fran approached HOPE Farm with a generous donation to begin the process of realizing Tom’s dream of a vocational center and on September 29, 2020, two years after his passing, there was an emotional event at HOPE Farm as we broke ground for what will be known as the Slone Vocational Center
To view the ceremony which included words from Mayor Betsy Price, visit