Judith Martin

1948 - 2011

Professor Judith Martin of the University of Minnesota died on October 3, 2011, at the age of 63.

Martin was a well-known personality on the University of Minnesota (UM) campus and within the Twin Cities, where she served as a visible and prolific commentator on the history, geography, growth, and redevelopment of the Twin Cities.

Martin was born in Chicago but made the Twin Cities her adopted home. She received her M.A. in American history and M.A. and Ph.D. in American studies at the University of Minnesota. Martin began working as a research associate in the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs at the University of Minnesota in 1976, and held various positions until she was hired as a professor of geography and director of the urban studies program in 1989.

Martin was widely regarded as an exemplary University citizen. She served as chair or vice-chair for the Faculty Consultative Committee, University Senate, Senate Committee on Finance and Planning, and countless other committees on governance, planning, teaching, and students. Martin was an invaluable member of the College of Liberal Arts 2015 planning committee and recently served on the provostal search committee.

A fifteen-year member of the Minneapolis Planning Commission, Martin served that body for seven years as president, contributing to the development of plans for land use, downtown development, light rail stations, and the new zoning codes that were developed in the 1990s.

In addition to directing the Urban Studies Program, Martin was founding co-director of the University Metropolitan Consortium. She was known for her ability to blend her research, teaching and service, and was widely sought for her expertise on urban planning, policy and governance; historic preservation; urban sprawl; and landscape and culture.

Martin received many awards over the course of her distinguished career for teaching and service, including the Morse Amoco/Alumni Teaching Award, Academy of Distinguished Teachers, College of Continuing Education Teaching Award, CLA Alumna of Notable Achievement, and President’s Award for Outstanding Service.

University of Minnesota President Emeritus, Robert Bruininks, said upon Martin’s death, “I received the news of Judith’s passing with deep sadness. She was a dear friend of ours, and frequent confidante and advisor whose leadership, thoughtfulness, and broad perspective on issues impacting the University were invaluable to me over the past many years.”

Contributions may be directed to: The Judith Martin Memorial Fund, c/o University of Minnesota Foundation, C-M 3854, PO Box 70880, Saint Paul, MN 55170-3854.

Judith Martin (Necrology). 2011. AAG Newsletter 46(11): 23.