Get to Know: Kevin Martin

Kevin working during an Emergency Management exercise
Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Kevin Martin, a UNC Charlotte alumnus, works as an emergency preparedness coordinator in the Department of Safety and Security.  A content expert in his field, Martin takes what can be a heavy job and exudes positivity and certainty in all he does. Get to know Martin more in the Q&A below.

 

How would you best describe your role as an emergency preparedness coordinator, and what does your typical workday look like?
As preparedness coordinator, my primary job function is the constant striving to ensure that the University is as prepared as possible for any type of disaster or emergency. 


What is the Emergency Management team responsible for and how does your role fit into that?
The Office of Emergency Management takes an all-hazards approach to the four phases (preparedness, response, recovery and mitigation) of emergency management. My role, as my title suggests, deals mainly with preparedness activities. Within this, my time is primarily split between planning efforts and dealing with the various technological systems vital to modern emergency operations.
 

Martin directing staff in the Emergency Operations Center.

You are a Niner Nation alumnus. What made you want to come back and work at the University?
When I returned to Charlotte in the fall of 2015, UNC Charlotte was at the very top of my list for places to work. I was very lucky that a position opened in the Office of Emergency Management the following year. My mother graduated from here in 1969 and myself in 1997. There was no other organization in Charlotte that I wanted to be a part of.


What’s your most memorable experience as an employee?
Sadly, due to my line of work, my most memorable experiences have all been associated with some of the worst days in this institution’s history. Of course I will never forget working more than 24 hours following the April 30th shooting, or the multiple tropical storms and severe weather events. Also, the civil unrest in Charlotte occurred within a few months of my hire. The University has faced many challenges since I started working here almost four years ago. I am proud to have played an admittedly small part in helping to see it through.


What drew you to the field of emergency management?
I got my start in emergency services as a volunteer on a county rescue squad in western North Carolina. After deploying to New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina I knew I wanted to be involved in the bigger picture of emergency management, not just as a responder. The failings I saw from that tragic event have stuck with me ever since.

Martin (third from left) sitting on a panel at the Campus Safety Conference.

 

What kind of hobbies do you have outside of work?
I’m an explorer by nature. I typically vacation to see mountains, and sometimes the valleys that separate them. I enjoy contemplating the nature of our existence -- I have a bachelor’s degree in religious studies, after all. I also really like space stuff and dinosaurs.

What is a fun fact others may not know about you?
I can’t blow bubbles with bubble gum.

How would you sum yourself up in one sentence? 
I’m just trying to do good stuff and have some fun along the way.

Is there anything else you would like to add?
Just a question to everyone reading -- are you NinerReady?

Editor’s note: NinerReady is a program that encourages the campus community to be prepared for an emergency before one arises. More information can be found online.