Alessandro Sorbello and Claudio Martini President of the Tuscan regional government
Claudio Martini was born in Tunisia at Bardo, a suburb of the capital on January 10th, 1951. He has a brother who was regional secretary of the CGIL trade union for 8 years and a younger sister. He has a 35 years old son, and in July 2006 he married for the second time.
The Martini family resided originally in the Leghorn area, but moved to Tunisia at the end of the 19th century as his great-grandfather was an anarchist and could not find work in his home country. President Martini is bilingual: he speaks and writes both Italian and French, having attended French-speaking schools as a child, as well as a little Arab. He was ten years old when his family decided to return to Tuscany at the beginning of the 1960s. His father, an expert accountant, was employed by a Prato company in the early period of the city’s textile boom. After junior high school and an important boy-scout experience, he enrolled at the Buzzi Technical Institute, a highly reputed vocational training school for chemical technicians. Here he encountered politics for the first time. His activity in the student movement brought him to a more important commitment in the Communist Youth Federation and afterwards in the party.
Though politics became the dominant note, the young Martini found time for other passions which became vital life constants: music: classical music first of all, but jazz and rock as well; and sports: bicycling at the top of the list, but basketball and soccer too as a supporter of the Florentine team. Alongside Mozart and the “Fiorentina”, there has always been a place for literature and cinema. When the workload permits, he still enjoys bicycling along Tuscan country roads, playing a good game of chess and navigating on Internet.
Before tackling high-level responsibilities at the Tuscan Region, Claudio Martini was well-known in the world of politics for his service as the Mayor of Prato from 1988 to 1995. During these years of crucial importance for the launching of the Province of Prato, he promoted several important projects: the University of Florence facilities in his city, the ionization of the water purification plant, the city’s industrial aqueduct, the Pecci Museum of Contemporary Art, urban renewal and restoration in Prato’s historical centre. One of the initiatives as Mayor of Prato for which he feels a special pride was the Pact of Friendship sealed with the City of Sarajevo, a commitment which has rewarded him with a lifetime honorary citizenship.
Elected to the Regional Council for the first time in 1995 as a candidate of the Partito Democratico della Sinistra; Martini was assigned the important job of Assessor for Health and Welfare. In thecourse of his term he was responsible for the approval of two regional health plans which have made the revamping of regional health services possible through the development of dehospitalisation policies and the improvement of local services and other initiatives aimed at promoting public and individual health. Several regional laws were passed under Martini’s supervision to streamline the organization of health services in Tuscany and, above all, to progressively eliminate a serious regional health service deficit.
In September 2002, and again in 2004, he was nominated President of the Conference of Remote Maritime Regions in Europe when he had already served as a member of the President’s office. In March 2007 he was nominated President of the "Forum of Networks of World Regions", a standing structure designed to bring together Regions from throughout the world to make their voice heard in a global world.
Fervently committed to the issues of globalisation, he is the driving force behind the meeting, "From global to glocial", held each year since 2001 in Pisa’s San Rossore national park. His first book, Un nuovo mondo globale. Da New York a San Rossore (A new global world. From New York to San Rossore), was published in 2002. The second, Capaci di sognare, was published in 2003; the third, Cambiare aria al mondo, in 2005.