Tomáš Hudlický was born in 1949 in Prague, Czechoslovakia. After several years of working as a process chemist apprentice and in other odd jobs in pharmaceutical chemistry, it became apparent that higher education opportunities were closed to him. Accepted as a probational student at Virginia Tech in 1970, he received his BS in chemistry in 1973, and went on to pursue graduate studies at Rice University under the direction of Ernest Wenkert in the field of indole alkaloid total synthesis, earning his PhD in 1977.
He worked at the University of Geneva for one year on the synthesis of isocomene. In 1978, he joined the faculty at the Illinois Institute of Technology as assistant professor. He returned to Virginia Tech, in 1982, and rose to the rank of professor. In 1995, he moved to University of Florida in Gainesville. In 2003, Hudlický moved to Brock University where he currently holds a position as Canada Research Chair professor of chemistry. In 2010 he received the Alfred Bader Award and in 2013 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.
He is the author of over 200 publications, 50 reviews, and 20 patents. In 2007 he and his wife, Josie Reed, published a book “The Way of Synthesis” (VCH). His current research interests include the development of enantioselective synthetic methods, bacterial dioxygenase-mediated degradation of aromatics, design and synthesis of fluorinated inhalation anesthetic agents, synthesis of morphine and Amaryllidaceae alkaloids and their medicinally useful derivatives, and design of unnatural oligo-saccharide conjugates with new molecular properties. His hobbies include skiing, hockey, martial arts, and music.