Name: Marty Padgett
Place of Birth: Washington, D.C.
Occupation: Writer, Editor, Producer
Year, Make and Model of your first car/truck:
1984 Ford Thunderbird
What did you want to be when you grew up?
I suppose I thought I’d be a teacher or a writer, since sports were a total nonstarter.
How long have you worked in the auto industry?
What do you drive now?
Are you out at work?
Was being gay ever an issue at any of your jobs?
If so, how did you deal with it?
As I got older and more assured of myself, I didn’t try to veil those big, important parts of my life from my family. Doing the same for work only followed naturally. The big lesson, I think, was to trust people more and to care about their negative opinions a little less.
If you had one piece of advice to give to a gay person wanting to work in the auto industry, what would it be?
Your life and your comfort are more important than a job where you feel intimidated or uncomfortable about being gay. Announce it in a polite way in the first week there and let people make an informed opinion about you and your skills from there. God knows you can always find another job, even if it’s Starbucks.
Ok, here is the fun part; if you had $25,000 and had to buy a new car, what would it be and why?
We did so twice and bought our current cars, for flexibility and fuel economy. Given the choice we’d probably buy the same ones over again.
Same question but bigger budget – $50,000:
For $50,000 I’d pay cash for both. Spending more is really unnecessary today with the excellence of cheap cars.
If money was no object and you had to drive it every day:
Okay, now we’re talking. Can I have an XKR convertible and a Range Rover?
What is your favorite car of all time and why?
I used to really love the Nissan 300ZX twin turbo, one of the first cars I drove as a car writer. But the most special vehicle I’ve driven was a Bentley Azure that I drove across Canada over the course of two weeks.
If your car/truck could talk, what would it say about you?
“Aren’t you a little old for this outfit?”