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Off-Road Hall Of Fame Inductees
Sue Mead Year Inducted: 2007

Sue Mead is an inductee in the Pioneer: Journalism category.

Sue Mead likes to think she began her automotive career as a young girl, riding her bike as fast as she could down hills large and small. As a teen, she graduated to an on/off-road motorcycle with knobby tires and fell in love with riding in the woods and on dirt trails. As a senior in high school, when she lived in Washington, D.C. Mead rode a Honda 50 cc motor scooter to school, and used it to explore the capital region.

Sue was born in 1950, in the Berkshires of Massachusetts, where she makes her home today. She graduated from Woodrow Wilson H.S. in Washington, D.C. in 1968, completed an Associate’s Degree in Psychology/Sociology at Montgomery College and a B.A. in Psychology at Goddard College. For many years, Sue worked in the field of mental health and as a part-time photojournalist/ freelance writer for the Associated Press and newspapers in New England. Her prayer to use writing and photography skills as a means to travel the globe and to have an ever-changing “view from my desk” was answered.

Sue began her automotive career as a part time, freelance evaluator for Four Wheeler Magazine in 1988. It was the first team that included women as test drivers. After spending one week on that year’s “Four Wheeler of the Year” evaluation, driving from the busy L.A. freeways, to the desert sands of Death Valley and on to the rigorous rock climbs on the trails of Lake Arrowhead and Big Bear, Sue was hooked. Over the next few years, she began to work as a freelancer for all the major 4WD magazines in the U.S., setting up off-road drives and adventures in places near and far. In 1994, when her daughter, Brooke, went to college, she followed her out the door and hasn’t stopped since.

She has been a participating journalist on Camel Trophy adventures in Borneo, Mongolia and Central America. Mead has also participated in three record-setting adventure drives: the Arctic Circle Challenge ‘95, the Tip to Tip Challenge ‘96, and the Transamerica Challenge in ’97.

She served as a co-driver for Rod Hall in the 1996 Baja 1000 (1st place finish), Darren Skilton in the 1999 Baja 1000 (1st place finish), and the Paris-Dakar-Cairo 2000, the world’s longest and most difficult off-road race, which they completed.

She drove her first off-road race behind the wheel with Skilton in 1999, winning first place in Class 3 in the SCORE Primm 300. Mead was also a co-driver in the Tecate SCORE Baja 2000 on the internationally ranked Mitsubishi team (1st place finish), and with the Scaroni Motorsports Team, in 2001. Mead also competed as a co-driver in the Nevada 1000, and is featured in the off-road documentary, Into the Dust, as a member of the Toyota Motorsports Team. Mead also competed behind the wheel on two Wide Open Baja/ Centrix Teams in the Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 in 2002 and 2003, and appeared in the movie “Dust to Glory.”

Sue has written three books: “Monster Trucks and Tractors”; “Off Road Racing, Legends and Adventures”; and “Rock Crawling”, published by Chelsea House. Her work has appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers worldwide, including the New York Times, Boston Globe, The Washington Times and the Houston Chronicle. She is currently a correspondent for Motor Trend Radio.  Sue is a member of the International Motor Press Association and has also been a board member of Tread Lightly! Inc. She has received two awards from the International Automotive Press Association for excellence in writing. Sue Mead is being inducted into the Off-Road Motorsports Hall of Fame in the category of Pioneer: Journalism.

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