David W. Martel is the Vice President for Communications and Chief Marketing Officer of the University of Virginia. Appointed in 2013, he is responsible for the leadership of University Communications, which stewards institutional marketing, brand narration, visual identity, media relations and outreach, social media, multimedia, and public relations. Martel is a member of the president’s cabinet and serves as a key leader in managing how the University positions itself among its diverse audiences. As the chief communicator on the Grounds, he leads a broad effort to generate understanding, engagement and support for the advancement of Thomas Jefferson’s vision of a forward-thinking global university, the value of higher education in America, and the impact of university teaching, research and service.
During his time at UVA, Martel has led a reorganization of the University Communications unit and has spearheaded the establishment of a multi-year strategic communications plan while restructuring the institution’s approach to issues management. Martel serves as an executive mentor in the Center for Leadership Excellence, has been a featured speaker in the Distinguished Faculty Speaker Series, and was appointed to the Miller Center Governing Council and the Curry School of Education Foundation Board in 2014.
Martel previously served on the senior management teams for the University of Connecticut and the Roper Center for Public Opinion Research. His extensive work analyzing the mind and mood of the American public on cultural, economic and political issues laid the foundation for a reliance on research assessment to measure the overall success of the department he leads today. David is married to Kristen Martel, and they have five children.