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Volume 25 No. 46
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A Day In The Life: Int'l Tennis HOF CEO Todd Martin

For the first time, the Int’l Tennis HOF is giving fans the chance to vote on who receives enshrinement, and as one would imagine, it’s making CEO TODD MARTIN a busy man. With voting open for the entire month of September and ending Oct. 7, Martin talked to THE DAILY to discuss how he balances the new initiative with his laundry list of responsibilities and explains how his greyhound, Eddy, keeps him sane. 

5:00am: I typically have an alarm set for 6, but regrettably, I don’t get to that alarm very often. We’ve got a little puppy at home so he usually gets us up around 5:00 or 5:30. I’ll have breakfast with my wife and kids, and then often, not always, I’ll take my kids to school around 7:45. 

8:00am: I live in a small town, so that gets me into the office (in Newport, R.I.), around 8:00, and then I try to sort of gather myself by addressing overnight emails and such. I try to consume a little bit of tennis media. I keep my eye on tour results. There’s a variety of tennis blogs and email pushes that I’ll catch up on. By about 8:30 or so I’m wrapping up preparations for whatever meetings I have over the course of the day.

9:00am: I have typically put together a list for my assistant and don’t let her sit down before I get it to her. Then I have a collection of different activities during the course of the day. Our strategic plan calls on three primary strategies. That’s engaging the customer, going global and serving with a philanthropic focus. Those three elements are often times at the forefront of my activity during the course of the day. We also just launched fan voting for the Hall of Fame, and I have one partner in crime (Senior VP/Global Business DIANNE HAYES) and I’m often checking in with her. 

Martin in the morning reads a variety of tennis blogs and emails to catch up
Photo: INT'L TENNIS HOF

10:00am: I wish I knew where I was going to be any given day at 10:00 in the morning, but it’s pretty sporadic. We’ve got a small staff. We’ve got about 40 people, and our business units range from operating a 20-court tennis club to running a museum and caring for a historic landmark. At the end of the day, we really have to be quite nimble. 

12:00pm: Lunch often times is a cup of soup and a seltzer water at my desk just to catch up on emails. I’ve gotten better at being more intentional with my time. It’s still something I’m working on. When I have gaps in my calendar, I’ve started to block my own work into there, and that’s been a real benefit to me.

1:00pm: The afternoon, if it’s not more of the same, I’ll try to put my head to the more governance-oriented work. We’re in the thick of it with our board elections. We have a board of governors that’s 81 people, and an executive board that’s 21. It’s pretty thick stuff, and it’s a bit of a challenge to start the day with that stuff. So when I have a decent window in the afternoon, I’ll tackle that. I’ll review our status with the fan vote, because it’s live right now, and then I’m probably spending from about 5:00-6:30 trying to wrap up on my communications and make sure I understand what staff has been doing. 

6:00pm: I refer to it as sanity. From an exercise standpoint, I play a game called court tennis so occasionally at the end of the work day I’ll sneak over to the court for an hour and play before I go home, but I try to be home by 7:00 at the latest -- ideally between 6:15 and 6:30. I have a mammoth four-minute commute. I’ll come home and catch up with my kids, CASH and GWEN, school days and spend some time with my wife, AMY. Our oldest son, JACK, is just about to start his sophomore year in high school. He has long days so we’ll typically go and pick him up anywhere between 7:30 in the evening until 10:00. We eat dinner late often just to make sure that we’re all there.

8:00pm: We’ve got two dogs. We’ve got a 100-pound greyhound, Eddy, and a nine-pound beagle puppy, Ollie. So it’s humorous for us to be out with them together. I love getting the greyhound out for a run. We don’t have much of a yard, but he does a good job of making good use of a small piece of property. I’ll take him out and just get him running around. In some ways that’s about the most sane moment of my day just because it really is freeing. To watch this massive dog go on a tear in the yard is just a blast. 

9:30pm: We all go to bed, minus the 15-year-old, pretty early. I’m probably in bed by 9:30 during the school year and am either trying to catch up on some reading that I couldn’t do at work or catching up on the news. I’m also a sports fanatic. So if there’s something compelling on the TV, I’ll do that or watch the “LAW & ORDER: SVU” episode that my wife falls asleep to. She watches the crime, and then I have to deal with the rest of it. 

Know of someone who should be featured in "A Day in the Life"? Send a note to jcarpenter@sportsbusinessdaily.com.