James L. Martin

James L. Martin

Jim Martin, 74, passed away June 29, 2019 after a brief illness. He was born March 18, 1945 in Colp, IL as the eldest son of James Lee Martin and Byrdella Webb-Martin. On June 2, 1989 Jim married his beloved wife, Debra.

Jim grew up in Racine, WI and graduated from Racine Park High School in 1963. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Dubuque and went on to earn his Juris Doctor from the University of Wisconsin Law School in 1977. After law school, he was hired as the Assistant City Attorney for Madison until he became the Madison City Attorney until 2003 when he was appointed as a Dane County Circuit Judge, serving until his retirement in July 2009.

Jim was known for his great love of sports. He was a three sport athlete in both high school and college. He was inducted into the Racine Park High School Sports Hall of Fame and in 2003, he was also inducted into the University of Dubuque Athletics Hall of Fame. Over 50 years later, he still has a school record for most interceptions in a single season with eight and for most career interceptions with 24.

His love of sports continued when he was hired as an assistant football coach for the University of Wisconsin under John Jardine. He was a basketball referee for over 25 years including several state WIAA tournaments. An avid golfer, he completed his bucket list of golfing 18-holes in each of the 50 states.

A community servant throughout his life, he was involved in many groups a few of which include: The State Bar of Wisconsin, the Wisconsin Judicial Council, the Wisconsin Trust Account Foundation, Board of Attorneys Professional Responsibility, Badger Basketball Boosters, and the Southwest Wisconsin Officials Association. At his time of death, he was serving on the Board of Safe Harbor Child Advocacy Center, the Board of Trustees at the University of Dubuque and was a Commissioner of the Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District.

He was preceded in death by his parents and two sisters Melba and Saundra. He is survived by his wife Debra, son David, brothers Gary and Marcus of Racine, WI, sister Kendall from Toledo, OH, nephews Gregory and Scott, and nieces Yvette and Angie, along with many other loved family members.

Memorial donations may be made to Safe Harbor Child Advocacy Center, 2445 Darwin Road, Madison, WI 53704 or The University of Dubuque, 2000 University Avenue, Dubuque, IA 52001.

A visitation will be held Friday, August 9, 2019 from 9:00-11:30 a.m. at Cress Funeral Home, 6021 University Ave, Middleton, WI 53705. A Celebration of Life will be held immediately following the visitation.