Baker Chair in
Office: Davis College
Dr. Martin graduated from the College of William and Mary in 1988, where she earned a Bachelor in Arts degree in English literature. She earned a master’s degree in Outdoor Teacher Education from Northern Illinois University and a doctorate in English from Illinois State University.
Dr. Martin has written extensively on African-American children’s literature. Her book, “Brown Gold: Milestones in African American Children’s Picture Books 1845 – 2002” drew from the James Weldon Johnson Memorial Collection of African-American children’s books, which Augusta Baker established in the Countee Cullen branch of the New York City Public Library.
Martin says she is happy to return to her hometown of Columbia, where she attended Greenview Elementary, Fairwold Middle and W.J. Keenan High School with Baker’s grandchildren, and to giving back to the community that gave her so much, including her defining verve and work ethic.
“You bloom where you are planted, and you give back wherever you can,” Martin said. “That ethic has followed me from my days as a naturalist at Sesquicentennial State Park in the early 1990s when I led programs for Greenview Elementary students, through my academic career. I love the idea of coming home and being able to give back to the community out of which I came.”