Ron Thomas, SAG-AFTRA Executive, Dies at 46

Courtesy of SAG-AFTRA
Ron Thomas

In addition to his day job, Thomas was a popular local DJ.

Ron Thomas, SAG-AFTRA’s senior manager of national member education and outreach, died May 3 at his West Hollywood home, The Hollywood Reporter has learned. He was 46.

Thomas, who had been with SAG-AFTRA, and AFTRA before that, for 13 years, was described by the union as a well-liked executive, popular with colleagues for his upbeat personality, endearing sense of humor and perpetual smile.

“Ron was a terrific person and a valuable part of our SAG-AFTRA staff family. He was a beloved colleague and we are grateful for his friendship and his many contributions on behalf of the membership,” said SAG-AFTRA national executive director David White in a statement. “He will be missed.”

In his role at the union, Thomas implemented and oversaw strategic partnerships and sponsorships nationwide with key industry, labor and community organizations. He also led advertising sales for the union’s member publication with a circulation of 135,000. A well-known local DJ, Thomas joined AFTRA in 2005 in the union’s sound recordings department before moving to the communications department in 2010, continuing with SAG-AFTRA after the unions merged in 2012.

“It is with heavy hearts that we say farewell to West Hollywood resident Ron Thomas who passed away sometime on the morning of May 3, 2018,” said his family and close friends in a statement in Wehoville, which first reported Thomas’ death.

The cause of death has yet to be reported, said the publication, and Thomas’ passing came just a few months after the death of his husband, Phil Hoskins, in November. They were together for approximately 23 years, said Wehoville.

Thomas grew up in Van Nuys, attended Pepperdine University and graduated from Loyola Marymount University. He had an extensive career in music prior to joining SAG-AFTRA, not just in his day job but also as a DJ, a passion that started in high school and continued throughout his life as he spun at various local clubs. Thomas was a reporting DJ for THR sister publication Billboard from 2000 to 2009, where his playlists and those of other select DJs were used to compile the Billboard Dance Club Songs chart.

A memorial is expected to be held during this year’s LA Pride weekend, June 9 and 10.