Susan Taylor Martin retires from the Tampa Bay Times after illustrious career
Photo courtesy Tampa By Times

Susan Taylor Martin
Martin spent 37 years with the Times.

Longtime Tampa Bay Times reporter and editor Susan Taylor Martin retired from her decorated career at the end of 2019, according to Times spokeswoman Sherri Day.

Martin worked for the Times for 37 years and was known for her reader-friendly storytelling and real estate reporting chops.

Martin’s most recent accolade was the 2019 Futrell Award for Outstanding Achievement in Communications and Journalism, an annual award given to a Duke University alumni by the Dewitt Wallace Center for Media and Democracy.

Through her nearly four decade tenure with the Times, Martin has covered business and real estate and has served as a national reporter and foreign correspondent.

“The judges were impressed by the breadth of Susan’s exceptional work, which ranged from important investigative journalism at the local level, to compelling stories from overseas,” said DeWitt Wallace Center Director Bill Adair in a release announcing her most recent award. “I worked with Susan for many years at the Tampa Bay Times and found her to be one of the most multi-talented journalists I’ve ever known.”

Martin has collected many awards over the years including the National Sigma Delta Chi Award for non-deadline reporting, the Society of Features Journalism award for narrative feature writing, the Green Eyeshade Award for business reporting and the Paul Hansell Award, which is given to a Florida journalist for an outstanding body of work.

Prior to working for the Times, Martin also worked for The Associated Press, Detroit News and the Orlando Sentinel.

Locally, Martin was a staple for real estate reporting. She not only kept readers abreast of high-dollar or headline-grabbing transactions ranging from multimillion dollar mansions to apartment complexes and retail facilities, she also offered intrepid reports on real estate trends and interesting anecdotes on real estate in the post-recession era.

In one report, she highlighted a Clearwater home that served as a reminder of the volatile “boom-bust-boom” market spanning the years leading up to and following the 2008 housing market crash. The ranch style home changed ownership seven times over 13 years and sold at lows less than $100,000 and highs well-above $300,000. The report highlights what Martin does best — capturing people-centric stories to illustrate broader trends.

In other report, Martin highlighted a Carollwood home where squatters took control of a property with a false deed and then tried to claim ownership — a trend that plagued the post-market crash real estate market as foreclosed properties often sat with ambiguous ownership.

Martin’s last post with the Times is, like most of her reporting, click-worthy. It explains why St. Petersburg’s hotel boom works despite the city lacking a convention center and being miles away from the gulf beaches.

Janelle Irwin Taylor

Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in Tampa Bay since 2003. Most recently, Janelle reported for the Tampa Bay Business Journal. She formerly served as senior reporter for WMNF News. Janelle has a lust for politics and policy. When she’s not bringing you the day’s news, you might find Janelle enjoying nature with her husband, children and two dogs. You can reach Janelle at [email protected].


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