Bucks Writs - Fall 2017 - 16

But retirement was not on Charlie Martin's mind then. The
citizens of Upper Southampton had elected him to the
Board of Supervisors beginning in 1983, while he was still
at PECO. He served the residents of Upper Southampton
for two terms, focusing much of his energies on the
purchasing and use of park land, which was a "hot topic"
in the mid-1980s. It was the time of the "Dump the Pump"
movement in Point Pleasant, when activists for preservation
were most vocal. He then was asked by fellow Republican
Party officials to run for County Commissioner after Andy
Warren's seat opened up in 1995. And now, Charlie Martin
has the distinction of being the longest tenured Commissioner in Bucks County history.

Charles H. Martin
The Chairman of the Board
- By Susan E. Dardes

He's also one of the most accessible, if I had to guess. The
Commissioner answers every email and telephone call from
citizens and county employees, and he'll meet to discuss
issues or concerns with anyone requesting an appointment
on a topic of local interest. He was quick to point out
the 2,400+ Courthouse and county-wide employees are
hardworking, conscientious people, and pointedly praised
the staff of Neshaminy Manor for their exceptional patient
care and teamwork.

It was my recent privilege to sit down in
Commissioner Martin's office, and speak
with him about his work, both before and
after his tenure as the Chairman of the
Board of Bucks County Commissioners.
Heretofore, I only knew him from photo ops and
newspaper clippings, when a road was being dedicated
or when the new Justice Center broke ground. Now, I got
to sit with the gentleman who has served as one of three
Bucks County Commissioners since 1995. And has loved
every day of it.

Open Space initiatives would have to
be one of Chairman Martin's highlights
during his time in Doylestown.
Much of that is due to Martin's great
accomplishments in preservation over the
last two decades; in fact, the 202nd farm,
more than 17,000 acres of farmland,
and, most recently, another park in
Bristol Township have been preserved
as "open space" in Bucks County.

Chairman Martin is not a native of Bucks County, having
been born in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, some years back.
When he was 7 years old, his family moved to Ivyland, "the
country," as he referred to it, and he attended elementary
school in a two-room school house. The building is still
there, although it now serves as headquarters for a
family-run business.
Ivyland was a great place to grow up, Mr. Martin said.
The family eventually moved to Warminster and later to
Upper Southampton where he graduated from William
Tennent High School. And Lebanon Valley College, as it
turns out, recruited from Tennent. The Commissioner's high
school class of some 200 graduates had six Lebanon Valley
incoming freshmen. Commissioner Martin double-majored
in political science and education while at college. He briefly
thought about going to law school after graduation but the
promise of a paycheck was more appealing at the time. He
was hired by PECO to work with various municipal projects
- which carried its own political feel - and enjoyed a
30-year career with them, until the early 1990s when they
offered him a retirement package.

Over the last twenty-two years that Commissioner Martin
has held office, Bucks County has only grown in popularity,
and change continues in our school districts, our roads and
our business centers. The County Government is unique in
operating a tile works, horse park, hostel, public golf course
and a grass strip airport.
I asked the Commissioner what he would say to what are
now, and what had been, the biggest issues facing Bucks
County. The problems high on the list in 2017 would be


Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Bucks Writs - Fall 2017

Bucks Writs - Fall 2017 - 1
Bucks Writs - Fall 2017 - 2
Bucks Writs - Fall 2017 - 3
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