FORMER ALBUQUERQUE MAYOR MARTIN CHAVEZ
Born: March 2, 1952, Albuquerque, New Mexico
Education: Georgetown University, J.D. (1978); University of New Mexico, B.S. (1975)
Family: Married - Margaret Aragon de Chavez; Two children
Hometown: Albuquerque, New Mexico
Career: Mayor of Albuquerque (1994-97); New Mexico State Senate (1989-93); Dir., New Mexico State WorkersÂ' Compensation Administration (1986-87); Practicing attorney (1979-86); Law clerk (1978-79)
Â• A native of New Mexico, Martin Joseph Chavez was born in Albuquerque and still lives there today. His ancestors were Spanish colonialists who settled in New Mexico 400 years ago.
Â• Chavez attended the University of New Mexico, and after graduating in 1975, he headed off to Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. to study law. While at Georgetown, Chavez worked as a staff assistant in the U.S. Senate and later was the deputy director of the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC).
Â• After graduating from law school in 1978, Chavez returned to New Mexico and worked as a law clerk in the Attorney GeneralÂ's office.
Â• Before entering the public arena, Chavez worked in private practice at his fatherÂ's law firm from 1979-86. He specialized in workersÂ' compensation issues.
Â• In 1986, Chavez was named the first director of the New Mexico WorkersÂ' Compensation Administration. He left this post in 1987 to re-enter private law practice. Soon after, he decided to run for the State Senate, and he was elected in 1988. He subsequently was re-elected to two more terms and served a total of six years.
Â• In 1993, Chavez became the first native of Albuquerque to be elected mayor of the city. While in office he targeted issues such as water conservation, crime, economic growth, and wiping out grafiti. He earned high approval ratings and gained exposure in the national media. Newsweek featured him as one of AAmericaÂ's 25 Most Dynamic Mayors.@
Â• After serving one term as mayor, Chavez decided to seek the Democratic nomination for governor in 1998. He won a six-way primary with 48% of the vote.