Judge Daniel E. Martin, Jr., was born in Charleston, South Carolina. His father, Daniel E. Martin, Sr., is a former circuit court judge who presided in the Ninth Judicial Circuit. His mother, Ruby N. Martin, retired as principal of Angel Oak Elementary School on Johns Island. Judge Martin’s parents have been married for more than 50 years. Judge Martin attended both public and parochial schools on the Charleston peninsular. He graduated from Bishop England High School in 1980 and entered Howard University in Washington, D.C. that fall. After obtaining his Bachelor of Arts degree, he enrolled in the University of South Carolina School of Law and obtained his Juris Doctorate degree in 1988. He was then admitted to practice before all courts in South Carolina as well as the United States District Court and the United States Court of Appeals.
In 1989, Judge Martin joined his father in his law practice and they created the firm Martin and Martin. Also in 1989, Judge Martin was appointed to serve as a part-time Magistrate for Charleston County. As Magistrate, he presided over landlord tenant disputes, claim and deliveries, small claims actions and bond hearings. He resigned this position in 1993 to dedicate himself to the full time practice of law. As a lawyer, Judge Martin handled domestic actions, criminal defense, civil lawsuits, probate matters and land disputes. He served on the bench-bar committees for the Charleston County Probate Court and the Charleston County Master-in-Equity Court. He served as legal counsel for the Town of Lincolnville from 1991 to 1998 and as Grand Legal Advisor for Prince Hall Grand Lodge of South Carolina from 2008 to 2011. He also served as a member of the executive committee of the Charleston County Bar Association, House of Delegates for the South Carolina Bar Association and the Resolution of Fee Disputes Board for the Ninth Judicial Circuit. He is former treasurer of the South Carolina Black Lawyers Association.
Judge Martin has been a life-long member of Emanuel AME Church where he served on the board of trustees. He has served on the board of directors for the Cannon Street YMCA and Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture. He served on the City of Charleston Commission for Children, Mayor Riley’s Committee of 12 and the City of Charleston Development Advisory Committee. He is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Nehemiah Masonic Lodge No. 51., George Washington Carver Consistory No. 162, and Arabian Shrine Temple No. 139. Judge Martin is a 33° Prince Hall Mason.
Since 1989, Judge Martin has been married to Reba Hough of Hartsville, South Carolina. Mrs. Martin is Deputy Director of the Charleston County Human Services Commission. Judge and Mrs. Martin have two children, Daniel E. Martin, III and Zelena S. Martin. Judge Martin was elected on February 2, 2011 to seat no. 1 of the Family Court, Ninth Judicial Circuit.