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Joseph Martins

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Joseph Martins
Joseph Martins.jpg
Board Member, Fall River School Committee, At-large
Term ends
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 5, 2013
First electedNovember, 2007
Next generalNovember, 2015
Term limitsN/A
Associate'sNortheastern University
Bachelor'sFitchburg State College
Master'sNortheastern University
Military service
Service/branchAir National Guard
ProfessionRetired educator
Office website
(timed out) Campaign website
Joseph Martins is an at-large member of the Fall River School Committee. He was first elected to the chamber in 2007 and he won re-election in a general election on November 5, 2013.


Joseph Martins resides in Fall River, Massachusetts. Martins earned an A.S. degree in Electronic Engineering and a B.S. degree in Industrial Engineering from Northeastern University, along with an M.Ed. degree from Fitchburg State College.[1] He served in the Air National Guard and reached the rank of Major before retiring.[2] Martins spent 39 years as an educator before retiring, spending most of that time working at Diman Regional Vocational Technical High School from 1968 to 2001. He served as an electronics teacher, evening school coordinator, assistant principal and superintendent. He also served as the director of the Newport Area Career and Technical Center from 2001 to 2006 and as a school based coordinator with E3 Academy Providence Public Schools from 2006 to 2007.[1]



See also: Fall River Public Schools elections (2013)


Joseph Martins, his fellow incumbents and newcomer Melissa Karam Panchley defeated challengers Russell Desbiens, Lori DeSousa and Dan Robillard to win six at-large seats in the general election on November 5, 2013.


Fall River Public Schools, At-large General Election, 2-year term, 2013
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngJoseph Martins Incumbent 15.6% 6,484
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngMelissa Karam Panchley 15% 6,263
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngMark Costa Incumbent 14.4% 5,996
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngPaul Hart Incumbent 12.6% 5,240
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngGabriel Andrade Incumbent 12.2% 5,063
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngRobert Maynard Incumbent 10.9% 4,543
     Nonpartisan Lori DeSousa 8% 3,352
     Nonpartisan Dan Robillard 7% 2,926
     Nonpartisan Russell Desbiens 4.3% 1,797
Total Votes 41,664
Source: Jo C. Goode, The Herald News, "No changes in order following release of official Fall River election results," November 13, 2013


Joseph Martins began the race with an existing debt of $1,377.69 from his previous campaigns. He reported $3,060.00 in contributions and $3,695.94 in expenditures to the Fall River City Clerk, which left his campaign with $2,013.63 in debt.[3]


Joseph Martins received an endorsement for his campaign from The Herald News.[4]


Fall River Public Schools, At-large General Election, 2-year term, 2011
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngJoseph Martins Incumbent 13% 7,823
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngMark Costa Incumbent 12.2% 7,336
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngTimothy McCoy Incumbent 11.2% 6,738
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngPaul Hart 11.2% 6,724
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngRichard Pavao Incumbent 10.4% 6,251
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngRobert Maynard Incumbent 9.5% 5,680
     Nonpartisan Gabriel Andrade 9.1% 5,439
     Nonpartisan Carla Sbardella 8.5% 5,082
     Nonpartisan Robert Tyrrell 8.3% 4,971
     Nonpartisan Louis Melim 6.5% 3,909
Total Votes 59,953
Source: Will Richmond, The Herald News, "Fall River's certified election results see no surprises," November 16, 2011

Campaign themes

In an interview with The Herald News, Martins listed the following campaign themes:[5]

I have been very instrumental in keeping our schools and school governance open to parental involvement and public scrutiny. Students learn best when parents are involved. Governance operates best when the budget is closely watched and decision making is transparent for all to witness.

I want to continue as a School Committee person to move programs forward. Middle schools need career awareness programs to provide relevance to academic subjects. Durfee’s Career Pathways Program needs to meet the implementation standards of Perkins IV Grant to qualify for additional state and federal funding. All Durfee students upon graduation need to have employment skills to obtain a job with a decent rate of pay and medical benefits, and be prepared to enter college if they so choose in careers of their interests.

I highly support partnering with Bristol Community College (BCC) to have college level courses at Durfee High School where all students have equal opportunity to receive college credits towards an associate degree.

What was at stake?

There were six seats on the school board up for election on November 5, 2013. Five of the six incumbents ran successfully for re-election, including Joseph Martins, Mark Costa, Paul Hart, Gabriel Andrade and Robert Maynard. Fellow incumbent Richard Pavao did not file for re-election. They were challenged by four candidates, including Melissa Karam Panchley, Russell Desbiens, Lori DeSousa and Dan Robillard.

About the district

See also: Fall River Public Schools, Massachusetts
Fall River Public Schools is located in Bristol County, Massachusetts
Fall River Public Schools is located in Bristol County, Massachusetts. The county seat of Bristol County is Taunton. According to the 2010 US Census, Bristol County is home to 551,082 residents.[6]


Bristol County underperformed in comparison to the rest of Massachusetts in terms of its median rates of average household income, poverty rate and higher education achievement in 2011. The median household income in Bristol County was $55,813 compared to $65,981 for the state of Massachusetts. The poverty rate in Bristol County was 11.3% compared to 10.7% for the entire state. The US Census also found that 25.1% of Bristol County residents aged 25 years and older attained a Bachelor's degree compared to 38.7% in Massachusetts.[6]

Racial Demographics, 2012[6]
Race Bristol County (%) Massachusetts (%)
White 91.1 83.7
Black or African American 4.3 7.9
American Indian and Alaska Native 0.6 0.5
Asian 2.1 5.8
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander 0.1 0.1
Two or More Races 1.8 2.0
Hispanic or Latino 6.4 10.1

Party Affiliation, 2012[7]
Party Registered Voters  % of Total
Democratic 123,044 36.43
Republican 34,914 10.34
Green-Rainbow 320 0.09
Unaffiliated 177,632 52.60
Other 1,800 0.53

Note: The United States Census Bureau considers "Hispanic or Latino" to be a place of origin, not a race. Therefore, the Census allows citizens to report both their race and that they are from a "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin simultaneously. As a result, the percentages in each column of the racial demographics table will exceed 100 percent. Each column will add up to 100 percent after removing the "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin percentages, although rounding by the Census Bureau may make the total one or two tenths off from being exactly 100 percent.[8] This Ballotpedia page provides a more detailed explanation of how the Census Bureau handles race and ethnicity in its surveys.

Recent news

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