Thomas R. Martin



B.A., Vanderbilt University

Thomas R. Martin serves as Executive-in-Residence in the Department of Communication at the College of Charleston in Charleston, South Carolina. He was named to the position, the first of its kind, in 2007.

In this role, Martin works to enhance the relationship between the Communication Department and the business community and to help students successfully launch their careers.

In 2023, he founded the Martin Center for Mentorship in Communication, to help inspire and develop a future generation of leaders and mentors among today’s outstanding communication students, and to foster more robust relationships between those who educate and those who practice in the communications field.

The Center’s work includes the Martin Scholars, a selective mentoring, networking, and experiential learning program for graduating seniors that Martin launched in 2016. Eighty-seven Martin Scholars have now completed the program and are now living and working in New York, Washington, Boston, Los Angeles, San Diego, Atlanta, Nashville and elsewhere in a wide range of successful positions in the communication field. Thirteen students have been selected for the 2023-24 school year.

Martin is a co-author of “An Overview of the Public Relations Function,” now in its second edition, published by Business Executive Press. He serves on the Advisory Board of the Arthur W. Page Center at Penn State University, a research center at the Penn State College of Communications dedicated to the study and advancement of ethics and responsibility in corporate communication and other forms of public communication.

He also serves on the Strategic Advisory Board for PublicRelay, a media analytics firm providing insights to leading global brands.

Martin retired in 2007 from ITT Corporation, where he served as Senior Vice President and Director of Corporate Relations at the diversified global engineering and manufacturing company. Martin joined the company in September of 1996. At ITT Corporation, Martin was an officer, a member of the company's Executive Council and was responsible for worldwide brand and reputation management, public relations, employee communications, government affairs, corporate advertising, and community relations.

Prior to joining ITT, Martin was Vice President, Corporate Communications for FedEx, where he was responsible for worldwide public relations, investor relations, and employee communications for the Fortune 150 Company. He was also responsible for the public relations and internal communications efforts for the launch of the FedEx brand in 1994.

He served as a trustee of the Page Society, a membership organization for senior corporate communication executives, from 2002-2015, was President of the Society in 2004-2005, and was one of the founders of Page Up, an affiliated organization for rising leaders in the profession. He served on the Board of Governors of the Josephson Institute of Ethics from 2005-2015 and was a trustee of the PRSA Foundation from 2013 to 2018. In 2023, Martin received the Order of the Silver Crescent from the governor of South Carolina in recognition of his long years of service to the College of Charleston.

He received the Milestones in Mentoring Legacy Award from the Betsy Plank Center at the University of Alabama, given to “individuals who have touched the lives of countless public relations professionals over the course of their distinguished and exceptional careers.” In September of 2011, Martin received the Distinguished Service Award from the Page Society, one of the Society’s two top awards for lifetime achievement. In November of 2006 he was inducted into the PR News Hall of Fame.

He and his wife, Wanda reside in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina. They have two sons, a grandson, and a granddaughter.