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Tom Marquardt

MDDC Hall of Fame Class of 2013: Annapolis Capital's Tom Marquardt
Tom Marquardt spent the final five years of his career as publisher of the daily Capital in Annapolis and twice-weekly Maryland Gazette – one of America’s oldest newspapers – closing a 35-year career in Annapolis after coming to Maryland at the age of 29.

“When I came to Annapolis, the newspaper was black and white and Internet wasn’t even a word,” Marquardt said in his retirement announcement.

Marquardt joined the Evening Capital in 1977 as managing editor. In 2001, Marquardt was promoted to executive editor, before assuming the role of editor and publisher in 2008.

Marquardt, who served as secretary for MDDC’s board of directors before his retirement in December 2012, was MDDC’s Distinguished Service Award honoree in 2007. After laboring to create the Open Meetings Compliance Board, Marquardt attended every annual meeting of the board to insure the newspaper industry keep a seat at the table. He led numerous fights on behalf of the Capital and MDDC to ensure government operations, records and meetings remained in the public domain.

“Tom has been a fierce defender of the public’s right to know about its government,” said Jack Murphy, the executive director of MDDC.

Marquardt’s award-winning career includes a handful of unique honors, notably being named the Daily Record’s Most Influential Person in Maryland in 2010 and the Society of Professional Journalists National First Amendment Award in 1991. Marquardt is past president of the Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts and Leadership Anne Arundel, which conferred their Distinguished Graduate Award upon Marquardt.

Marquardt also won the Black Chamber of Commerce President’s Award, and serves on the board of directors of the Anne Arundel County Library Foundation. An award-winning writer, he continues his weekly wine column for the Capital.

Marquardt was raised in Dearborn, Mich., in the shadow of the headquarters of Ford Motor Co., for whom his father labored in a foundry. Marquardt received a degree in journalism from Central Michigan University in 1970, and after serving two years in the Army, was hired as a reporter at the Big Rapids (MI) Pioneer in 1972.

In 1975, Marquardt became city editor of the daily Ypsilanti (Mich.) Press, and later ascended to the editor’s position before relocating from the Great Lakes to the Chesapeake Bay.

“Times may have changed us,” Marquardt said is his retirement story. “But they haven't changed readers who have remained steadfast in understanding the value of a community newspaper.”

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