Thomas J Billard (aka TJ) is a political communication scholar and has two primary research areas. First, he studies the role of communication in the social and political activism of the contemporary U.S. transgender movement. Second, he studies typography and graphic design, with a particular interest in the processes of production and meaning encoding. He is currently affiliated with the Civic Paths research group at USC and the Centre for Printing History and Culture in Birmingham, England.

TJ's research has been presented at the annual meetings of the International Communication Association, American Political Science Association, and American Sociological Association, among others. His writing has been published in the Journal of Communication, International Journal of Communication, Mass Communication & Society, Communication Research Reports, Politics, Groups, & Identities, Frontiers in Psychology, Archives of Sexual Behavior, and Marketing Theory, as well as several edited volumes.

TJ holds a BA in political communication from the George Washington University's School of Media and Public Affairs and is currently a PhD candidate in the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California.