References & Testimonials

TJ Smiling

History speaks for itself. So do the voices of today. Read the comments and praise for Mr. Jefferson’s performances over the years.


Your first person interpretive portrayal of Thomas Jefferson was well received by the public and helped them to better understand his life and accomplishments, and his relationship with Albert Gallatin.

I was amazed at the ease with which you assumed the role, and your ability to tackle tough questions. You also were very adept at easing the transition for those who did not quite understand the role, but in such a way as to not step out of your character.

As an addition to the two days that you worked at the NPS site, you also agreed to give a full day of school programs at the Albert Gallatin North Middle School. It was my pleasure to witness the six different programs that you presented throughout the day. The programs were fast paced and kept the sixth grade students engaged. Each program was slightly different, which kept your ten experts interested, but still hit on your major themes.

Again I cannot express my appreciation for your work and I look forward to having you come up again at the end of July.

Norman W. Nelson Jr
Chief Ranger/Unit Manager
Fort Necessity National Battlefield
Friendship Hill National Historic Site


“Over the past several years, it has been my pleasure to witness Tom Pitz interact with people of all ages and in many different circumstances (museum settings, banquet halls, private homes and on the street). He immediately transports people back in time with his first person portrayal of Thomas Jefferson. Whether he speaks to a group or one on one, he is totally engaging, putting people at ease while entertaining them in grand style with charm and humor yet staying down-to-earth. He always makes a memorable connection with his audience.”

Bea Keaton
docent at Historic Michie Tavern


“I have had the pleasure of knowing and performing with Mr. Tom Pitz over the last three years at Mt. Rushmore. His interaction with the audience is very strong as Thomas Jefferson. He creates a bond, especially with children when he sits and shares stories of American heritage in the shadow of the Rushmore figures. That he enjoys performing as America’s third President is obvious and from my observation his audience responds in a very positive way to his performance. He stands very well with the Rushmore Presidents.”

Gib Young
Theodore Roosevelt Historical Interpreter


“Familiar as I am with a number of Thomas Jefferson interpreters, and having performed on stage with Tom Pitz at Mount Rushmore on several occasions, I can say without reservation that he is the quintessential Thomas Jefferson.”

As Portrayed By
“Living Biographer” Carl Closs


“Even after more than a year our collective memory of your visit with us as Thomas Jefferson has not dimmed. We admired your skill in handling the group. You were gracious, as a Virginia Gentleman should be, drawing everyone with you back into history.”

Martha Bruning, Past Director
Pittslyvania County Public Library
Chatham, VA


“Your portrayal of Jefferson was very effective, and I appreciate your willingness to join our other re-enactors to create a fitting tribute to Madison on the occasion of his birthday and the opening of our new Visitor Center Complex.”

Michael C. Quinn, Past President
The Montpelier Foundation
(James Madison’s home)
Orange, VA


“Your performance as Mr. Jefferson was excellent. You really made him come alive for all of us. In fact, during Sunday breakfast some of our bridge club members said they were overwhelmed by your authenticity! That is a real complement to your talents.”

Vernon Davis
Leesburg, VA


“We all so enjoyed the evening you made possible. Thank you so much…. We were glad you made some more serious remarks because we still need to realize and prize our religious freedoms – and there are attempts to threaten them. Jefferson’s words are still timely.”

Mary Ann Gibbons
The Plains, VA


“I thought your portrayal of this great Virginian was not only superb but inspired. I can’t begin to tell you how many favorable comments I received on the quality of your performance. Though I am sure no one truly appreciates the depth of preparation and exhaustive fine-tuning that goes into such a finished performance, our Society members were tremendously impressed with the historical research into Thomas Jefferson’s life and times that you obviously had done, your grasp of diction and rhythms of late 18th century speech and your appreciation of the very thought patterns of the time. More than that, though, you seem to have acquired a deep understanding of Mr. Jefferson’s public and private philosophy that helped us to appreciate him as we never had before.

I had seen a previous after dinner performance at Grace Episcopal in The Plains and I was determined to bring this remarkably fine historical entertainment to our members. Speaking as someone who has researched the details of Mr. Jefferson’s life at times, and someone whose wife was Professor Dumas Malone’s assistant during the writing of the third and fourth volumes of his Jefferson biography, I can say that Mr. Pitz’s research and preparation for this daunting task of historical reenactment are extraordinarily good. Our members, who pride themselves on their scholarship in Virginia history, likewise found Mr. Pitz’s performance to be exhaustively researched, faithfully accurate, and mightily entertaining…. The intervening 200 years seemed to slip away in an evening such as this, and the recreated presence of Mr. Jefferson as a contemporary makes this great statesman greatest thoughts accessible to one and all. Mr. Pitz is exceedingly good at ad-libbing incidental speech in the manner of the early Republic, but he manages to use direct quotations from Thomas Jefferson on a wide range of subjects, including most of the subjects the audience can think of to raise. His performances certainly deserve a wider audience, particularly in Mr. Jefferson’s native State.”

Richard Crouch, Past President

“Mr. Jefferson was a charming and unique addition to the festivities of the evening. The talk was both relaxed and informative, and executed with the utmost skill. The Society gladly recommends Mr. Pitz for any occasion.”

Mrs. J. Lee, Board of Directors
Fauquier Historical Society, Inc.


“Your presentation was educational and entertaining. Your representation of Jefferson was thorough and you took us back to his time. Thank you for sharing your wealth of knowledge on Thomas Jefferson and the American Revolution.”

Stephanie Fox
National Geographic Society
Washington, DC


“All I hear this week is stuff about you — clearly you were a hit. You really woke people up around here — people were wildly impressed by your program, and the salon was stunning. There is no substitute for intelligent talk.”

Beverly Ball, past public relations director
Denver Museum of Nature and Science
Denver, CO


“Wow!!! What a fantastic experience. I was thoroughly drawn into world of Jefferson, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights circa 1807. These kinds of unique opportunities are why I enrolled in the Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies [at the University of Virginia]. Intellectually challenging, thought provoking and illuminating.”

Anonymous student evaluation form
University of Virginia
Charlottesville, VA


“Every community has its hidden treasures; Tom Pitz is one of ours. His sensitive and scholarly portrayal of Thomas Jefferson has been enthusiastically received by every group we have ever shared him with…. Whether you are planning something special for a large or small gathering, I can whole heartedly commend Tom Pitz for your consideration. He is a reliable professional in his approach and your guests will leave feeling that they have shared an evening with Mr. Jefferson.”

Pat Hamlett, retired president
Behind the Scenes tour company
Charlottesville, VA