About Monica R. Martinez
Chair of Committee on Domestic Animal Welfare
Suffolk County Legislator Monica R. Martinez is a Brentwood High School alumna and a graduate of Binghamton University, having earned a dual Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology and History in 1999. Monica later attended New York University, attaining a Master’s degree in Secondary Education with a concentration in Social Studies. Monica obtained her administrative degree at Stony Brook University in 2006. In 2010, Legislator Martinez was selected to lead the administration of Brentwood’s East Middle School as Assistant Principal where she dedicated much of her time enriching the lives of her students. She successfully campaigned for the office of Suffolk County Legislator in 2013 and was elected to represent her home, the Ninth Legislative District.
In collaboration with the County Executive, Legislator Martinez has offered FREE summer programs for five consecutive years in Brentwood, Central Islip, and North Bay Shore. Moreover, she has funded numerous anti-gang/anti-violence programs through local non-profit organizations which offer safe environments and mentorship programs to our youth. In 2015, Legislator Martinez established the first Suffolk County Child Care Commission, dedicated to equipping parents, educators and elected officials with information on the importance of early learning during the first 0-5 years. Monica’s devotion to educational initiatives can be exemplified by her efforts in securing a $125K grant to create a STEM research program where students from Brentwood and Central Islip High School have been recognized as semi-finalists in the Siemens Competition.
Legislator Martinez raised awareness towards the illegal dumping that occurred at Roberto Clemente Park in Brentwood, NY. It was discovered in 2014 that 40,000 tons of contaminated debris were dumped in the park. Monica held a forum to inform her residents of the various toxic materials discovered. She worked with several officials, health and legal professionals, and other non-governmental organizations in order to call for accountability to be made towards those responsible for illegal dumping and for the park to be cleaned up. In August 2017, Roberto Clemente Park was cleaned up and safe for residents to attend. In July 2018, Monica sponsored a Free Soccer Clinic at Roberto Clemente Park, where kids could train and learn different life skills during the summer.
Monica has also been devoted to hosting community outreach events in order to assist residents living in the Ninth Legislative District. Her office oversaw the Annual End of Summer Back to School Block Party in order to supply free backpacks and school supplies to families who cannot cover their children’s school expenses. As an educator, Legislator Martinez believes that all students should have easy access any resource needed to successfully complete their studies. Monica teamed up with a former student of hers to create a “Friends in Tech” Event, where young girls had the opportunity to be exposed to STEM-related activities. She also commenced with hosting the Annual Christmas in the Plaza event so that Brentwood and Central Islip residents could come together and take part in celebrating the holiday festivities as a community.
During her tenure as a Legislator, Monica made it a priority to promote legislation supporting animal rights. She co-sponsored a law to further strengthen Suffolk County’s regulation on the outdoor restraint of pets and re-establish the “Safe Pets and Families Program” to provide temporary shelter for pets of domestic violence victims. She introduced legislation to regulate animal resource organizations operating in Suffolk County and to improve the county’s Animal Abuse Offenders Registry.
In her third term, Legislator Martinez was appointed Chairwoman to the Public Safety Committee at the Suffolk County Legislature and Vice Chair to the Education and Human Services Committee and Budget and Finance Committee. Legislator Martinez is committed to eradicating the opioid epidemic through collaboration with local law enforcement officials to reduce the widespread use of heroin and prescription medication abuse in Suffolk County. As a Suffolk County Legislator, Monica supports laws aimed at protecting and improving the safety of Suffolk County residents. Monica co-sponsored a bill implementing a new Public Safety Rapid Response Project, which is a new initiative aimed to ensure the safety of students and teachers in the event of an emergency. This is done through a new smartphone app called RAVE, which permits any person to alert the police of a dangerous situation within a school setting.
Monica remained committed to enhancing the area she represents through various legislative actions such as opening two resource centers, sponsoring and co-sponsoring resolutions for women's wage equality, expanding legislation to protect the rights of individuals affected by sexual harassment, banning smoking in multi-dwelling apartment complexes, strengthening county animal laws, and barring contractors in Suffolk County if found guilty of illegal toxic dumping.
Monica’s legislative accomplishments prompted her seek higher office by running for the New York State Senate. On November 6, 2018, she made history by being the first Latina and woman elected to represent the Third Senatorial District. State Senator-elect Martinez hopes to continue her work in assisting constituents and implementing beneficial policies for all New York State residents.