Ray Thoms was born in Toronto in 1938, and was raised and educated in Bradford, Ontario. His family is of Italian Canadian culture and he was imbued with a deep sense of caring for family members and friends. Ray worked for several companies in the Toronto area such as DeHavilland Aircraft, as a radio/radar installer, and, Office Specialty as a spray painter. This last position brought him to Sudbury to paint for his uncle Bruno Cavallo at Cavallo Signs. He joined the Copper Cliff Police Department in 1964 and worked as a First Class Constable until 1971. Ray changed career paths and attended North Bay Teachers College during 1971-72 all the while pursuing his Baccalaureate Degree at Laurentian University, graduating with a major in Religion and Philosophy in 1976. He taught for the Sudbury and District Separate School Board, at several of its schools including Our Lady of Fatima, Naughton, and St. Raphael’s. He retired in 1998 and devoted himself to developing his talent and skills in Photography. He married his wife Jackie, in 1964. They have two children and four grandchildren. He continues to live in Sudbury and considers himself a transplanted but true Northerner.