Tom Sawyer was first elected to the Kansas House of Representatives in 1987. During that time he served in many leadership positions and earned a reputation of working across party lines to solve problems and to improve the lives of Kansas families. He stepped down in 1998 to run for governor, but returned to the Legislature in 2002. Tom then served until 2009, when he was appointed by Governor Parkinson to serve on the Kansas Parole Board. The voters of District 95 elected him to the Legislature a third time in 2012. His district encompasses portions of central Wichita. Tom is a native Wichitan and a small business owner. He graduated from Wichita State University with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting. He has been active in the Wichita community for his entire life, having served as a former member of the United Methodist Urban Ministries Board of Directors, a member of the Visioneering Wichita Committee Task Force, and a member of the Wichita State University Presidential Selection Committee in 2012.
Tom also served as Sedgwick County Clerk and is active in his church, the West Side United Methodist Church, where he has volunteered as church council chair and youth group sponsor. Througout his career in the Kansas Legislature, Tom has been a trusted leader. He has served as both House Minority Leader and House Majority Leader (he is actually the only Wichitan to serve as House Majority Leader since 1969). Tom has also held leadership positions on several high profile committees, including House Elections & Ethics Committee, Legislative Post Auidt, and the House Appropriations Committee.