By Evan McClelland 
BELLEVILLE – One of the most familiar voices in the area is set to retire after nearly 25 years on the radio.
Paul Martin, the soon-to-be former news director at Starboard Communications , is starting a new chapter in his professional life — joining Hospice Quinte as an education and support services worker.
“Since I was turning 50 I was looking for a change that would make more time available for me and especially my family,” Martin said.
His new job involves helping volunteer end-of-life counsellors, and conducting grief workshops. Those workshops are meant for people who have experienced loss and need help working through it.
“It will present me with the best of both worlds. Which is to say, make a good living, enjoy the people I’m working with, feel I’m still doing important work, but be able to be at home, be with my family and give them my full attention when I’m not at work.”
He said being on the radio and doing the news was like being paid to learn.
Martin has many fond memories of his time on the radio over the years. Things he said will stay with him forever.
“From time to time I’m also sad. When you care about something as much as I’ve cared about my time here, it’s hard to leave,” he said.
Despite that, he said “it was time for a life change.”
Paul Ferguson, the program director at Starboard, said he was disappointed to see Martin go.
“Feels like we’ve grown up together,” Ferguson said.
Echoing Martin, though, he did say that sometimes people need to make a change and that Martin “found what’s perfect for him.”
Martin says he will now be able to put his degree from Queens in psychology and philosophy to good use in his new line of work.
Nicole Kleinsteuber is a multimedia reporter and news anchor at Starboard. She said Martin gave her her first start in radio when she was at Loyalist in 2010. She worked elsewhere over the years, but returned four months ago.
“There’s not too many bosses that will, when you’ve got your first assignment, take you under their wing and make sure that you’re comfortable with everything and introduce you to everybody, and that’s what he did for me here,” Kleinsteuber said.
She said she was going to miss their little conversations in the morning.
“He’s been not only a good news director, but a great mentor and an amazing friend,” she said.
Martin also said he is considering running for city council. However, he didn’t have much more than that to say on the subject.
“Stay tuned,” he said.