In 2004, Mel Martinez was the first Cuban-American elected to the United States Senate. During his term, he served on several committees including Banking, Housing & Urban Affairs, Armed Services and Foreign Affairs. He also served as Chairman of the Republican National Committee in 2008.
Prior to his time in the Senate, President George W. Bush appointed Senator Martinez as the 12th Secretary of the United States Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD).
Mel also served as Mayor of Orange County (Orlando, FL) and before beginning his public service, he practiced law for 25 years. He received both his B.S. and J.D. degrees from Florida State University.
He currently serves as Chairman of the Southeast & Latin America for JPMorgan Chase & Co. and is on the boards of Marriott Vacations Worldwide as Lead Director and NVR, Inc. He is also a Trustee at the Center for the Study of the Presidency & Congress (CSPC) in Washington, D.C.
Mel and his wife, Kitty, reside in Winter Park, Florida; they have three children and five grandchildren.