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Martin, John A.

Spotlight: John A. “Jack” Martin, Sr.

John A. Martin, founder of John A. Martin & Associates, Inc., was born on December 12, 1918 in Spokane, Washington. During the Great Depression, his father moved their family around the northwest United States, and settled in Los Angeles, California. Martin played baseball, football, and wrestled in high school; by the age of 17 he was a “a talented American Legion ballplayer.” With no intention to go to college, Martin’s father introduced him to the baseball coach at the University of California at Berkeley. “At their first meeting, the legendary coach asked young Martin, ‘Why don’t you come to school at Berkeley?’ Jack said, ‘I have no money, no job and no place to stay and don’t know what I’ll study.’ Evans continued, ‘If I get you a job, a loan, and a place to stay will you come and play baseball at Cal?’ … Martin [recalls], ‘I got a job at the Student Union and a place to stay at the Phi Sigma Kappa house, and a loan. The counselor assigned [to] me noted that I had taken some pre-engineering courses earlier and, when I mentioned that the only thing I was good at as a student was mathematics, he suggested engineering as a career path. And that’s how I got into engineering, and I’ve never been sorry I did!'”
John Martin joined the US Navy after Pearl Harbor was attacked in 1941. During his five year naval career Martin received his degree in engineering from Cal in 1943. After Martin’s release from the Navy in 1946, he joined Brandow and Johnson Associates, a firm which was just getting on its feet starting on school buildings, and expanding to high-rise structures. In 1953, after 7 years at B&JA, Martin founded John A. Martin & Associates. He remained active in engineering societies, serving as president of both the Structural Engineers Association of Southern California (1976-77) and the Structural Engineers Association of California (1978-79). He is also an active member of numerous councils and institutes such as ASCE and the Tall Building Council. At one time in his career, Martin held a professional engineer licenses in 49 states. Today, he still possesses two California engineering registrations – a civil license (first issued in 1949) and a structural license (first issued in 1951). John Martin still visits the office regularly and remains a role model to emerging engineers.
Source: Richard G. Weingardt, P.E. John Alfred Martin Decisive Business-Savvy Engineering Legend


Fremont Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada. Courtesy of JAMA, Inc.


Written by Anna Hernandez

January 31, 2011 at 6:19 pm

Posted in Engineers

John A. Martin & Associates

John A. Martin & Associates, Inc. (JAMA)
Main Office: 950 South Grand Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90015
Additional Offices: Tucson, Arizona
Stevenson Ranch, California
Costa Mesa, California
San Diego, California
San Luis Obispo, California
Lakewood, Colorado
Honolulu, Hawaii
Las Vegas, Nevada
Cheyenne, Wyoming

Denver, Colorado

Beijing, China
Number of Employees: Over 450, including 90 licensed structural engineers

Engineering Specialties: [1]
Structural Design of Structures
Foundation Design
Feasibility Studies
Seismic Evaluations and Upgrades
Renovation / Repair Design
Structural Analysis
Sustainable Design / LEED
Evaluations / Investigations
Programming, Conceptual, Schematic Design, through Construction Administration
Forensic Investigations
BIM Design
Blast Design
Historic Design Considerations
Nonlinear Dynamic Response Analyses
Performance Based Earthquake Engineering
Design of Base Isolated Systems
Design of Structures with Energy Dissipation Devices
Research and Development
Vibration Analysis and Design
Structural Peer Review
Structural Plan Checking
Damage Assessment
Probable Maximum Loss
Legal / Expert Witness

History: [2]
In 1953, John A. “Jack” Martin, Sr. founded JAMA with principals Greg Clapp, S.E. and Steve Schiller, S.E. The firm’s first large project was The Fremont Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, completed in 1956.
Following their start in the hotel and casino field, JAMA expanded towards sports entertainment venues, theaters, convention centers, and both office and residential projects. With capabilities in structural design for all project types and sizes, JAMA has completed projects worldwide.
The firm has been awarded a large number of awards throughout the years. JAMA has been recognized for their innovative use of materials, excellence in structural engineering, design, and merit. In 2004, JAMA received awards from the Structural Engineers Association of California for their landmark design and best use of new technology in the new construction on the Walt Disney Concert Hall. They also won three awards for their structural design of the Staples Center in Los Angeles. JAMA’s work on UCLA’s Royce Hall won a Superior Structural Engineering Excellence Award, making the firm very well-established in the seismic field as well. [3]
Throughout the years JAMA has had numerous publications; the majority have been written by Farzad Naeim, Ph.D., S.E., Director of Research and Development. Topics include structural design, earthquake engineering, and seismic analysis. [4] Additionally, Naeim has written a book, and edited another, dealing with seismic design. [5] Structural Analysis & Design of The Walt Disney Concert Hall was published by JAMA associates including Naeim and John A. Martin , Jr., S.E., the founder’s son who is JAMA’s structural project director.
Today, JAMA is one of the largest privately-owned structural engineering firms in the nation and has 12 offices in the U.S. and one in Beijing. On average, JAMA completes over 60 million square feet of new construction annually throughout the world.

Selected Projects:

Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles, California

Anaheim Community Ice Stadium, Anaheim, California

Cooper Union New Academic Building, New York, New York

San Diego Convention Center, San Diego, California

Additional Projects:

Fremont Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada. Courtesy of JAMA, Inc.

MIT Stata Complex Engineering Building, Cambridge, Massachusetts

Cahill Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics, Pasadena, California

Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, California

Soka University Preforming Arts Center

Written by Anna Hernandez

January 24, 2011 at 8:38 pm

Posted in Engineers