In this interview, David Zierler, Oral Historian for AIP, interviews Thomas Mason, professor of chemistry and biochemistry at UCLA. Mason recounts his childhood in Frederick, MD, and he describes the influence of his father, who was a zoologist. Mason discusses his undergraduate education at the University of Maryland where he pursued a dual degree in physics and electrical engineering, and he describes the opportunity that led to his graduate work at Princeton. He explains his work at Exxon Research and Engineering Lab, where he worked with Dave Weitz, and he describes the growth of soft matter condensed physics. Mason discusses his dissertation in micro-rheology and some of the broader questions in Brownian systems when colloids are micro-dispersed. He describes his postdoctoral work in France with Jerome Bibette, where he focused on the science of emulsification, and he discusses his senior postdoctoral position at Johns Hopkins, where he worked with Scot Kuo who was concentrating on the rheology of concentrated DNA. Mason explains his decision to join Exxon as a principal investigator, where he researched asphaltenes, and he discusses some of the broader advances in soft matter physics fostered at the Exxon lab. He describes his motivations for returning to academia, and in particular his desire to teach, he explains the opportunity leading to his tenure at UCLA, and he describes his contributions to the NanoSystems Institute. Mason discusses his involvement in many of the clinical and therapeutic aspects of soft matter physics, and at the end of the interview, he offers insight on where his broad interests in platform technologies might be relevant as his field continues to grow.