After an ACL injury cut his baseball career short, Randy Martin joined the equipment management team in the Baylor football program, allowing him to maintain a scholarship. Upon graduation from Baylor, he joined his parents’ family business building high end custom closets. During his employment with Programme Martin, Inc., the company became a leader in the custom closet market. Martin was named President and CEO in 2003. Among his many professional achievements, he was commissioned to design closets at the White House for Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, as well as many other famous and influential clients through the years. Martin recently retired and is now living in Waco with his wife, Pam.
What is your current occupation?
I have just started to work on my Doctorate degree in “RETIREMENT.” Just last week, I closed out the checking account for my business, Programme Martin, Inc., after 48 years of service. My wife, Pam, and I moved to Waco about a year ago to get out of the Houston traffic and to be closer to Dallas so we could be closer to our daughter Kim, her husband Drew, and our 3 and 5 year old grandchildren as well as our new two week old grandchild. Another reason was to allow me to attend Baylor athletic events and to volunteer in the athletic department.
What led you to a career in that field?
In 1970, my father, A J Martin, opened a new business manufacturing and selling European-style modular furniture and closet systems. Graduating from Baylor in 1976 with a management/marketing double major, I liked the challenge of starting up and growing a new small business. I had the pleasure of being able to work with my mother and father in the business until my father passed away in 2003 when I became President and CEO.
How has the COVID-19 pandemic affected you?
Luckily, I was in the process of selling assets and shutting down our business when all of the COVID-19 issues began, so I did not have to deal with this on a business basis. Personally, this has changed all of our lives but I have really enjoyed the time to be with my family. It comforts me to read Peter 5: 6-7 “Humble yourselves then under God’s mighty hand so that He will lift you up in His own good time. Leave all your worries with Him-because He cares for you.” This passage affords me the strength and courage to make it through these trying times.
What is your most significant achievement at Baylor?
I like to tell people that we won the football 1974 SWC Championship due my handling of the football equipment. Although that is not true, being a part of that team was a very special part of my life. I still speak with many of our teammates on almost a weekly basis as our team has remained quite close as we close in on our 50 year reunion. Prior to Coach Teaff’s arrival at Baylor, the Board of Regents and Athletic Director were having serious conversations about dropping out of the Southwest Conference and joining a D2 college division or shutting down football operations completely. Our 1974 team went from last place in the Southwest Conference in 1973 to winning the Southwest Conference in 1974—a feat that Baylor had not attained since 1924 (going from last place to first in a major football conference in one year has not been done by any team since 1974). Dave Campbell once said that our team served as the cornerstone of Baylor Athletics. I was truly blessed to have been a part of that experience.
What is your fondest memory of your time at Baylor?
This somewhat relates to the question above, but I think the memory that I most remember is the UT versus Baylor “Miracle on the Brazos” game in 1974. Down 24 -7 to a highly ranked Texas team featuring Earl Campbell, Marty Akins, Roosovelt Leaks, Raymond Clayborn, Doug English, and a number of others who went on to play professional football, we came back to score 27 unanswered points in the second half to win the game by a score of 34-24. Coach Darryl Royal came to our locker room after the game to congratulate our team on our impressive win and to tell us not to worry about A&M as they would take care of them so we could become conference champions. Being on the field that game was an experience that I will never forget.
Why did you become involved in the “B” Association?
Once I graduated from Baylor, I found out how much I really missed the school, the football program, and the many close friends from our team. The “B” Association not only gave me the chance to visit with some of my old teammates, but the chance to socialize with other letterwinners who had the same love for our university. When I missed a game, I would get a call from my dad’s friend and baseball teammate, Dutch Schroeder, asking, “Martin, where were you this past Saturday?” As our daughter got older and commitments in sports and Club Volleyball began, I really missed being able to attend Baylor football weekends. After my daughter decided to attend Baylor, we never missed games—it was a chance to not only visit with Kim, but to visit with many of the friends I had met in the Lounge through the years. After she graduated from Baylor, we just made Baylor Football and the Lettermens Lounge a priority. Largely thanks to Walter, Tammy, and Lauren, our facilities and programs rank top 5 nationally. That is something that many of you may not know, but we need to take advantage of being a part of one of the, if not the best, letterwinners associations in the nation.
What advice would you give to current student athletes?
None of us are going to go through life without making mistakes. That is true in sports, in business, and in life in general. Just don’t give up. We will all face adversity and we will all make mistakes. It is what we learn from our mistakes that will define how much success we will achieve in our lives—in sports, in business, or in life. Seek advice from people who have been in your shoes before and never forget that God, our Heavenly Father, is always available for free consultation.
What would we most likely find you doing on the weekends?
A perfect weekend would be a Baylor sporting event with friends over afterwards to visit, fire up the grill, and sit back and enjoy life. The current COVID-19 situation makes this somewhat impractical, but I tend to look at the clouds “silver lining” to think that we are not far off from being able to get back to this in the near future.
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