Posted on Jul 22, 2019
Danny Martinez, born in Wichita Falls and successful both in the music industry as well as the food and beverage industry spoke about his history and his current business projects.  Danny is a person of action giving back to the community by hosting Hispanic music concerts, working with charities and providing scholarships for college textbooks to employees and their families.
He also tipped us to a wonderful project in the works -- a documentary with Tejano singer Stephanie Lynn, who performed with Selena's backup band.
SW Wichita Falls Rotarian Michael Tipton, GM of Spectrum managing the MPEC facility, introduced Danny Martinez, local businessman and music industry exec, as the speaker at the SW Rotary meeting July 22, 2019.  Danny shared his experiences from being born in Wichita Falls. After graduating from Old High he moved to Las Vegas and then San Diego. 
Danny spent 15 years in the music business, entering in San Diego as a producer and promoter for an independent label that was later purchased by Sony DMG. The music business took him to San Antonio where he worked with artists touring Mexico and the US.
He came back to Wichita Falls, heeding the call of family.  He followed his family’s profession and entered the Food and Beverage industry, as the music business in Wichita Falls is small.
Over time, he has built a successful group of related Food and Beverage businesses including The Maplewood, Vaca Loca of Texas, Emerald City Nite Life and Tequila Marys in Wichita Falls. He also owns and operates El Sancho Mexican Restaurants in Iowa Park and Frederick, Oklahoma as well .
Danny has taken over The Maplewood, at 2611 Plaza Pkwy, Suite 301 A, as his newest restaurant.  This 6-year-old bar, styled like an upscale hotel bar, is being updated, adding food and lowering prices. Danny recruited the chef who helped open the Karat Bar to develop his sandwich menu and is working The Maplewood’s marketing with Design Works.  
The Maplewood will soon open for lunch.  Danny plans to continue their music format of 3-6pm with Motown music, 6pm 60’s music, 7pm 70’s music, and finish from 8pm to closing with 80‘s & 90’s music.  “Open mic night” is Mondays once per month and Karaoke is on Thursdays.
In response to a question, Danny noted that hiring employees is his biggest challenge.  He maintains Texas Workforce Commission job postings and pays more than the minimum wage.  He has a foundation of experienced employees who have been with him from two to five years.
Danny noted that Wichita Falls is supportive and business friendly compared to his ongoing experience in opening a similar business in Frederick, OK. The Tillman county process for establishing the business with an alcoholic beverage license has taken a year.
Danny gives back to the community in several different ways.  He holds concerts for the Hispanic Community, works with some charities and provides scholarships to employees buying the textbooks for their MSU and Vernon /College courses.  While this is usually for two or three employees at each location if too few employees apply, then their families can apply for the textbook scholarship funding.
Danny is working on a project with Stephanie Lynn, a local Tejano performer who sang in Selena’s backup band in the 90’s.  Stephanie is still active and sang the Star Spangled Banner before the July 4thfireworks hosted by the City of Wichita Falls at the MPEC. Their project is a documentary and will include live footage from a live album recording to be held at the MPEC.  
SW Rotary was honored and pleased to host Danny Martinez and see him as a Person of Action who makes a positive difference in our community.