Arin McKenna
Los Alamos County employee Tim Martinez stands in front of his handiwork, the framing for “Valle Grande and Jemez River.”
Martinez is a woodworking wizard

His official title is construction specialist 3.
His job duties include basic maintenance for all the buildings, keeping HVAC units functioning and overseeing in house construction projects.
His skills include plumbing, welding, laying carpet, putting up drywall and painting.
But Tim Martinez’s most notable skill is carpentry. Although most people do not know his name, it is likely that they have seen his work.
The most high profile of Martinez’s many carpentry projects for the county is the framing for “Valle Grande and Jemez River,” Sam Tubiolo’s triptych tile mural in council chambers.
The project began with screwing a plywood base to the wall for Tubiolo to lay the tiles on. Martinez then framed the panels by milling rough cut maple to 12-feet by 6- or 10-feet lengths, planing it down and adding dado joints (made by cutting a channel in the wood) for piecing it together.
“The artist, Sam Tubiolo, said, if I ever get another project, I’m going to call you up so you can come frame it for me,” Martinez said.
Many of Martinez’s projects are not evident at first glance, such as a maple covering for a steel railing on the ramp in council chambers. The addition is beautifully matched to the maple dais the council sits at.