10 Things You Didn't Know About Jim Martin

Jim Martin was born to Joseph and Helen Martin on Aug. 22, 1945, in Atlanta.

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1. Jim Martin was born to Joseph and Helen Martin on Aug. 22, 1945, in Atlanta. His father was a manager at Westinghouse.

2. In third grade, Martin contracted polio. At one point, he was quarantined with only his parents and doctors. Physical therapy helped Martin make a complete recovery.

3. Martin's mother, Helen, stayed home to raise her six sons. Martin is the second oldest of the six. All of them have names that begin with the letter "J"—Joe, Jim, Jack, Jere, Julian, and Jeffrey.

4. A native Georgian, Martin received all four of his degrees from Georgia universities. He received his bachelor's degree, law degree, and master's of law degree from the University of Georgia. His master's degree in business administration is from Georgia State University.

5. After earning his law degree, Martin enlisted in the Army and served one tour of duty in Vietnam. Two of his brothers, Joe and Jack, also served in Vietnam.

6. Jim and Joan Martin were married in January 1970. They have four children—Morgan, Becky, Jay, and Frank—and three grandchildren.

7. In 1982, Martin won a seat in the Georgia House of Representatives. In 2001, after 18 years in the Georgia statehouse, he went on to serve as commissioner of the state department of human resources for two years.

8. Martin ran for lieutenant governor of Georgia in 2006. He lost—receiving 42.3 percent of the vote while Republican Casey Cagle won with 54.1 percent.

9. Saxby Chambliss, one of Martin's opponents in the Senate race, was Martin's Sigma Chi fraternity brother at the University of Georgia. Both men worked to pay their college tuition and once sold fruitcakes to earn the money.

10. Martin's public service includes a position as assistant legislative counsel for the Georgia General Assembly and later working for the Georgia Legal Aid Society as a legislative advocate.


  • Associated Press
  • Atlanta Journal-Constitution
  • Augusta Chronicle
  • Georgia Secretary of State
  • Martin for Senate
  • National Journal