When Tucker Martin ’00 was five years old, his dad, Milton Martin ’67, took him to his first Randolph-Macon football game. A future Yellow Jacket was born.
“I went to a lot of games, so I got to know the campus well,” says Martin. “When it came time for college, R-MC was a natural choice.”
The Hopewell, Virginia native majored in history. “I love history, and Professors Mark Malvasi and James Scanlon really made an impression on me,” he says. “Professor Malvasi is remarkably skilled at the subtle art of pulling on one string in a historical narrative and seeing what that can do to the entire ball of yarn. That’s a gift. In addition, I was always impressed with English Professor Ritchie Watson’s teaching style and his interest in literature.”
Some of Martin’s fondest—and funniest—memories involve his R-MC friends.
“I still laugh when I think about those four years—although most of my stories are not fit to print!” he says. “I spend a lot of time banking on the timely expiration of certain statutes of limitations.”
Martin finds it easy to stay connected to his alma mater, too. “When you are related to my father, and to Pepper Laughon (Class of 1959), you hear a lot about R-MC just through osmosis!” he says. “And I’ve stayed close with a great group of guys, which helps me stay in the loop.”
Martin earned his master’s degree in politics from The George Washington University and worked for several years for a small political communication firm. In 2004 he moved to Richmond to handle press for Virginia House Majority Leader (now Congressman) H. Morgan Griffith; he later served as deputy director of communications and deputy press secretary for Attorney General Jerry Kilgore. In 2006, he became the director of communications for Governor Bob McDonnell, who was the Attorney General-elect at that time. “I’ve been with him ever since,” says Martin. “For a Virginian, there is no higher honor than to serve the Governor of the Commonwealth. I’m still not sure what I did to deserve this opportunity.”
Martin says he can’t live without music—“I need it in order to function”—and he makes sure his iPod is always charged. His musical taste is eclectic: Phish, the Trey Anastasio Band, The Grateful Dead, classical, bluegrass and jazz. And even at the end of the busiest day, he tries to make time to read. “The greatest book of all time, in my opinion, is John Kennedy Toole’s A Confederacy of Dunces, he says. “And I devour anything and everything by Hunter S. Thompson, Tom Wolfe and P.J. O’Rourke.”
Although social media plays a big role in his job, Martin doesn’t use Twitter or Facebook in his personal life. “It’s a job hazard,” he explains. “But we use it extensively in the Governor’s office. We place the same importance on effective utilization of social media as we do on traditional media. Anything we push will go through every available platform for dissemination. What did Jesse James supposedly say about robbing banks? ‘Because that’s where the money is.’ Well, today, social media is where the people are, and for that reason our message better always be there, with our framing and branding in place.”
Asked to share a tidbit about himself that most people do not know, Martin laughs.
Paving the Way for Success Rather than prepare students for one career, Randolph-Macon College prepares students for a lifetime of careers in an ever-changing world. Exceptional faculty work with students to cultivate their ability to think critically and analytically and to find creative solutions for solving problems. R-MC graduates are well-prepared for successful careers, often far outside of their areas of study. The Randolph-Macon EDGE, the cornerstone of the Center for Personal and Career Development, helps Randolph-Macon students lead the pack when competing for jobs and top graduate schools. Students have the support of faculty, career coaches, alumni and staff as they focus on their personal and academic ambitions. Students may choose to pursue paid or volunteer internships in a wide variety of settings. The Bassett Internship Program has been successfully placing students in academic internships both in the U.S. and around the globe for 30 years. Coordinated with the Center for Personal and Career Development, the program helps students identify their interests and matches them with an appropriate internship opportunity. Randolph-Macon’s alumni provide a strong network of support for students throughout their time at the college or in assisting them after graduation with career direction and opportunities. The college’s Four-Year Degree Guarantee guarantees in writing that freshmen who meet the Four-Year Degree Guarantee requirements will graduate within four calendar years. If not, Randolph-Macon will waive tuition costs for courses needed to complete the degree. Currently, 95 percent of R-MC graduates complete their degree in four years or less—an important value-added benefit for parents to consider when visiting colleges with their students. Study Abroad programs offer students a beyond-the-classroom global perspective and opportunities to immerse themselves in other cultures. Students can choose from a host of travel courses during January Term and semester-abroad programs. The Schapiro Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) program gives students the opportunity to conduct 10 weeks of original research under the guidance of faculty mentors. Many students present their findings at national and international conferences. Read more Alumni Success stories.