Born in New Rochelle, N.Y. on August 10, 1953. My father, David M. Martin, worked for Texaco, my mother Patsy Ann Martin. was an artist and substitute teacher. I was
the middle child of three.
We moved to a small town, 30 miles north of NYC, called
"Valhalla" when I was 2. Our family lived in a modest, split-level house
in the suburbs of NYC. I attended the Mt. Pleasant School, a one-room school
house for Kindergarden. It had a mural of elves painted on one wall that was done by
my mother. For elementary school I attended Hawthorne Elementary, then Columbus
Middle School followed by Westlake High School where I graduated in 1971.
After HS I attended Windham College in Putney, Vt., which is
no longer in business, but, don't blame me. I got out of there as fast as I could. The
President of our student council had written and published the book called, "The
Anerchist's Cookbook". A copy of that book was found among the belongings of one of
the Columbine terrorists!
At 19, I ventured out to LA and went to work for a
very wealthy doctor. His great wealth inspired me. I returned home, which was now Houston
since my father was transferred there by Texaco. Rather than returning to college I joined
the Air Force. Upon my discharge in
1974 I began pursuing my entrepreneurial goals. I met a stunning woman named Becky
at the apartment complex where I was living. She was seperated from her husband who
was a Houston police officer and the mother of two adorable children. She was also
about 8 years older than me. Eventually she broke up with me to find someone more
My dream was to become a real estate developer. I
worked my way up the ladder in construction to the point I was an independent general
contractor building country club houses, hotels, office buildings and retail centers.
In 1978 I met a girl named Julie and we began to go steady. When Julie moved
to California I was contacted by a girlfriend named, Karen whom I had met and been in love
with when I was in the Air Force. Karen came to visit and it was magical. Just
as Karen was returning to Nebraska, Julie changed her mind about California and wanted to
come back. She moved in with me and we became engaged. As the wedding
approached I got cold feet knowing that I still had strong feelings for Karen so I called
it off. In 1979 I saw the decline in the real estate market looming and began making
arrangements to switch gears.
By necessity my focus shifted to another industry.
I began brokering oil & gas equipment. That led me to the conclusion that the
oil & gas industry needed something that the real estate business had been using for
years. So, in 1981 I introduced an on-line multiple listing service for the Oil
& Gas equipment. The central database was hosted on a main-frame computer in Maryland.
Oil & Gas companies around the world could access it using a computer and a dial-up
connection. Sound familiar? Most people think the Internet was invented by Al Gore in the
mid 90's. Ha! Ha! Although the Oil & Gas industry went into the crapper in 1983, but
my pursuit of computer and internet related business had begun.
From 1984 until the mid 90's I worked as a computer
consultant, a professional magician and finally broke into real estate development.
While the computer business was interesting, performing magic at comedy clubs, night
clubs, on television and at festivals was my passion. During this period I had met
and moved in with a woman named, Martha. We built a home together, in a subdivision
called, "Waldenwood" that I bought from the original
developer and finished developing. In 1993 I had an opportunity to buy a software
publishing company in NY and move it to Houston. Not long after that I had some
friends who owned a softball park that they desperately wanted to get rid of so I put
together a group to purchase that business as well. Another friend of mine brought
us an opportunity to market a fire ant eradication product so we built yet another
business around that invention. By 1996 I had my hands into 5 different companies
and my relationship with Martha was declining. At her request we got married to
give her the security of that committment. Within a year we were planning our
divorce. It took a year to unwind our affairs.
My father had passed away in 1990 and my mother was
living alone in Horseshoe Bay. When her health began declining I relocated to
Horseshoe Bay to take care of her. Upon arriving in Horseshoe Bay in mid 1997 I
bought a house and began doing computer consulting for local businesses. She talked
about the need for an assisted care facility in Horseshoe Bay for people like her that
loved it here, but needed to be in an assisted living environment and didn't want to leave
here. We started planning the development of such a facility. I worked out a
deal on some land at the entrance to Horseshoe Bay West from Wayne Hurd, the developer of
Horseshoe Bay. A friend of mine, Armand Biglari, and his father ,who was an
architect in San Antonio, drew up a land plan for a facility on that tract of land.
I hadn't gotten much further than that on the project when I lost my mother.
My mother passed away in late 1998 and I moved into
her home on the lake. As the Internet became more popular I shifted my business
focus from computer consulting to developing websites. Through one of my clients I
met a woman named, Christina. We had our first date on Valentine's Day 1999 and by
April we were engaged. She and her children moved into the lake house with me.
While Christina and I resolved to go our seperate ways, the bond I had established with
the children was permanent. Laura and David are still the pride and joy of my life.
At this time, in 1999-2000 I was helping with an
effort to build a community hospital in Marble Falls. That battle was lost, but,
those of us who recognized how strategic the medical professional industry can be as a
core business in our regional economy, pressed on. And, that perserverence evolved
into a partnership with Armand and Molly Biglari to develop a 116-acre tract of land as a
medical business campus. In 2006 an agreement was made with Lake of the Hills
Regional Medical Center, LLC to build a hospital on the campus. This evolved into an
agreement in 2009 with Scott & White Hospital of Temple, Texas to build and operate
the hospital. After a year Scott & White terminated the agreement because they
were not prepared to meet the deadlines for delivery of the hospital that were contained
in the agreement. Circumstances at that time dictated that we turn over the property
to our investors. It was sold soon afterwards to Scott & White and a new
timeline for the construction of the hospital was put out. While it was
disappointing to lose the opportunity to develop the campus, and the time and money that
went into the venture, we are still able to garner a great sense of accomplishment since
our goal and our perserverence to bring a full-service, acute care hospital to the region
are none-the-less being realized.
The small town allure of Horseshoe Bay and the
surrounding communities took me back to my roots, growing up in a small town in New York.
Much of my time since moving to Horseshoe Bay has been dedicated to preserving the
small town atmosphere that is hard to maintain when you are in the growth cooridor of a
major city like we are in relation to Austin and San Antonio. As such, I've served
on the board of the Chamber of Commerce, founded a regional economic development council,
and served on the board of the Capital Area Economic Development District.
In 2005 I campaigned for the incorporation as a
city of Horseshoe Bay to protect Horseshoe Bay from the influence of nearby municipalities
that were expanding toward us. The citizens of Horseshoe Bay overwhelmingly approved
the measure. Because I had campaigned for this change, but, didn't want
incorporation to change the dynamics of the community, I submitted myself as a candidate
for Mayor. My mayorial campaign website is archived
here for anyone interested.
Fortunately, for myself and Horseshoe Bay, I lost
the election and Horseshoe Bay got a really great leader in Bob Lambert as its first
mayor. It also made it possible for me to pursue the development of Skywater Over
Horseshoe Bay, the most significant expansion of Horseshoe Bay since the addition of
Horseshoe Bay West.
favors the prepared mind.
favors the brave.