Founder & CEO of The Martin Organization
Rod D. Martin, founder and CEO of The Martin Organization, is a technology entrepreneur, futurist, fund manager, thought leader and activist from Destin, Florida. Fox Business News calls him a "tech guru," Britain's Guardian describes him as a "philosopher capitalist," BlazeTV has dubbed him "one of America's leading public intellectuals", while Gawker once described him as "another of [PayPal founder] Peter Thiel's brilliant nonconformists.”
An investor, director or officer in numerous ventures, focusing in the Internet, biotech, aerospace and energy sectors, Mr. Martin is especially noted for his role as a member of the pre-IPO startup team at Silicon Valley legend PayPal -- the so-called “PayPal Mafia” -- where he served as a senior advisor to founder and CEO Peter Thiel. Launched during the worst of the dot-com bust by a team whose average age was just 23, PayPal amassed more than 25 million customers in just over two years, drove giant competitors such as Western Union, AOL and Citibank out of its market, and conducted the first successful post-bust tech IPO.
Mr. Martin helped lead the takeover and turnaround of Galectin Therapeutics (NASDAQ:GALT),where in addition to serving as managing member of the company's largest institutional shareholder he has also served in a variety of capacities including Lead Director and Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors. GALT's lead candidate drug, which has successfully reversed liver and kidney fibrosis and cirrhosis, is now in its Phase III human clinical trial and has received Fast Track designation from the FDA.
Mr. Martin is also Founder and CEO of Martin Capital, and a Founder of 10X Capital Management, Navigo, Alpha-2 Pharmaceuticals, Martin Imaging, and Agincourt Ventures, among other endeavors.
Mr. Martin previously served as Policy Director to Governor Mike Huckabee and as an aide to senior Congressional leader John Paul Hammerschmidt. He is a member of the Board of Governors and Gold Circle of the Council for National Policy, the Committee on the Present Danger, and the Board of Advisors of the National Association of Christian Lawmakers, is a three-time past President and later National Advisory Board Chairman of the National Federation of Republican Assemblies, and serves on the Board of Directors of the Center for Security Policy, America's foremost conservative national security think tank.
Mr. Martin has also addressed audiences on four continents, has written extensively for publications such as Forbes, Human Events, Inc., Fortune and FoxNews.com, and has served as a member of Stratfor's Board of Contributors.
In 2014 Mr. Martin was named Distinguished Visiting Professor of History, Government and Entrepreneurship at Hannibal-LaGrange University, a highly ranked private liberal arts college. He was a Sturgis Fellow at the University of Arkansas, studied political and economic thought at Cambridge University in Great Britain, and is an award-winning civil rights scholar. He was elected student body president at Baylor Law School, where he was also named Outstanding Oral Advocate. He is a member of the Sons of the American Revolution (General Joseph Martin Chapter, named for his fifth great grandfather), is deeply involved in charitable work aimed at alleviating global poverty, and has raised significant sums for scholarships for disadvantaged children.
Mr. Martin serves on the boards of several charitable and educational institutions, including The Martin Foundation, the Institute for Advanced Biotechnology, the Board of Advisors of the Liberty University School of Business, and the Board of Trustees of Truett-McConnell University, and previously the Board of Governors at Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership (HOBY). He is a co-founder and Steering Council member of the Conservative Baptist Network, two-term member of the executive committee of the Florida Baptist Convention State Board of Missions, and a former officer of the Executive Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention, America’s largest Protestant denomination.
He is married to Sherri, proud father of Dolly, Archer and Haley, and grandfather of Annabelle and Beatrice.