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Roland S. Martin

editor, The Chicago Defender

Roland S. Martin worked as a reporter for black-owned and white-owned newspapers; his voice was heard on radio news programs; he held editorial positions at a major magazine and a high-traffic black-oriented Web site; his syndicated column ran in newspapers nationwide; he was a frequent guest on radio and television talk shows of all political stripes; he ran a multimedia company of his own; and he wrote books. In 2004, Martin took on perhaps his greatest challenge: the revitalization of the *Chicago Defender*. Born around 1969 in Houston, Texas, Martin was inspired to follow a career in journalism by his father, an avid newspaper reader and fan of television news. In 1987 Martin graduated from Houston's Jack Yates High School in a magnet program devoted to communications. He went on to study journalism at Texas A&M University, graduating with a bachelor's degree in 1991. Martin landed a job at the Austin American-Statesman and started his journalism career at a basic level, covering county government and neighborhood news. In 1992 he covered the Republican National Convention for the paper and was sent to Louisiana to file reports from the area devastated by Hurricane Andrew.