David is one of the most civically engaged Latinx leaders in the Pacific Northwest. He grew up in rural eastern Oregon, and today channels his identity as a Latino gay man to build and strengthen community. He is the son of Virginia and Aquilino Martinez, farmworkers, who raised their eight children in Ontario, Oregon. After 20 years working in Oregon higher education recruitment and multicultural affairs, David decided he wanted to do more. He started by taking a job as the Policy Constituent Relations Manager for Multnomah County Commissioner Maria Rojo de Steffey in the early 2000s, when the county decided to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
David has also served on the original board of Portland’s Q Center (LGBTQ Community Center), was co-founder of Portland Latino Gay Pride (aka PDX Latinx Pride) and he co-chairs the annual Cesar E. Chavez High School Leadership Conference (CECLC). A true servant-leader, David’s work in his community is recognized by more than his alma mater. The 2022 mural “Never Look Away” along Portland’s Northwest Broadway and Northwest Couch Street recognizes eight local and national heroes of the LGBTQIA+ community, and David Martinez is one of them.