Tom Balbo has spent most of his life in and around Cleveland, Ohio. Born December 19, 1954, he attended public and private schools in the Cleveland area. In 1977 he graduated from Baldwin-Wallace College in Berea, Ohio with a B.A. in Studio Arts. Tom then went on to receive his Master's Degree from Syracuse University's College of Visual and Performing Arts in Syracuse, New York in 1980 in Studio Arts. Tom was awarded a Syracuse University Fellowship Grant in 1979 and a Ford Foundation Grant in 1980.
Tom's earliest work was primarily in ceramics and printmaking. As his interest in papermaking grew, his work turned increasingly towards expressing his artistic creativity in this area. Over the past 40 years, Tom's work has been exhibited and shown in a large number of shows and galleries and he has garnered numerous awards and critical attention for his work.
In 2008, Tom along with other local artists, founded The Morgan Art of Paper Conservatory and Educational Foundation in Cleveland, Ohio. Presently, Tom continues to work in paper, printmaking, and ceramics. Dividing his time between creating in his studio/gallery and as the Artistic Director at the Morgan Conservatory.