The Life of Mary Joan Martelly: Philanthropist, Mother, and Wife of George Foreman

When you think of George Foreman, you probably picture a ferocious fighter. He is a sports legend for his boxing domination and career. Behind every great man is a wonderful lady, they say. This article highlights Mary Joan Martelly, wife of Olympic gold winner boxer George Foreman. Mary is a force of nature, not just a supporting character.

Mary Joan Martelly is famous, and her husband, George Foreman, is an Olympic gold medalist boxer. The couple has been together since 1985, demonstrating their strong love. George’s fifth wife, Mary, complicates their story. George Foreman’s life inspired a TV show. The duo has promoted AIDS-related issues for youngsters.

Now,  let’s take a look closer at Mary Joan Martelly’s life and her important position with George Foreman.

Quick Information

Full name Mary Joan Martelly 
Birth date May 17, 1963
BirthplaceMon Repos Village, St. Lucia (An Eastern Caribbean island nation) 
Age (As of 2023)60 years old 
Zodiac SignTaurus
Ethnicity African-Caribean
FatherMr. Martelly
MotherMrs. Martelly
Famous ForBeing the daughter of rapper, Nelly
ProfessionFormer Restaurant Worker, Former Factory Worker, and Former Nanny
Networth $500 thousand approximtely

Mary Joan Martelly’s biography

Google has well-covered on Mary Joan Martelly.

In Mon Repos, St. Lucia, Mary Joan Martelly was born on May 17, 1963. George Foreman’s loving wife is her most famous status. They’ve been married for almost 30 years. Families with seven daughters and two boys raised Martelly. After her father’s premature death at 44, Mary and her siblings had to work odd jobs to cover the bills.

While her husband, George Foreman, is famous, Mary Joan Martelly goes her own way. She has occasionally discussed her past despite her modest lifestyle. Due to her African-American heritage, Mary has always valued solitude. Her little media exposure shows her reluctance to shine. Such as her brief participation in the 2008 reality show “Family Foreman.” She stated in subsequent statements that she disliked public attention.

Mary Joan Martelly, Lesser known than her husband, is a constant support in George Foreman’s life, helping their long and meaningful marriage succeed.

The Educational History of Mary Joan Martelly

SchoolHigh schools
College or UniversityUniversity of Massachusetts
Educational DegreeMaster’s degree

Mary Joan Martelly’s educational journey has been somewhat elusive in terms of specific details. While there isn’t extensive information available about her schooling, multiple sources and a handful of interviews suggest that she earned her degree from the University of Massachusetts. Notably, this university is renowned as the hometown of the famous English poet Emily Dickinson.

Despite the lack of information about her high school and master’s degree, it is known that Mary Joan Martelly, after gaining popularity through her marriage to George Foreman, has expressed a passion for poetry. She even competed for and completed a master’s degree, showcasing her intellectual pursuits beyond her role as the wife of a well-known public figure.

Mary Joan Martelly Physical Measurements

Eye colorBrown
Hair colorBlack
Height5’4″, 162cm
Weight58Kg, 127.86lbs
Body Measurements35-26-37 inch

Mary Joan Martelly’s physical attributes paint a vivid picture of her natural beauty. She is 5 feet 4 inches (162 cm) tall with appealing brown eyes and silky black hair. Mary Joan has a well-proportioned body of 58 kilograms (127.86 pounds) and 35-26-37 inches. These details offer a glimpse into her physical presence, showcasing a combination of elegance and vitality.

Mary Joan Martelly’s family

Source: Youtube

Mary Joan Martelly was born into a typical Cariban household, where strong family values and close-knit bonds held immense importance. As the third child among seven girls and two boys, her early life was shaped by the warmth and support of this large and tightly-knit group of siblings. Although specific details about her parents’ names remain private, the foundation of her upbringing rested on these familial connections.

However, the most significant familial chapter unfolded with her marriage to George Foreman in 1985. Mary Joan’s life revolved around George, a former boxer and Olympic gold medalist. They start a loving family with five children.

George Foreman’s son-naming custom is unique. The five boys share the name “George Edward Foreman,” symbolizing their brotherhood. George aptly stated, “If one of us goes up, then we all go up, and if one goes down, we all go down.”

Five sons and seven daughters make up George Foreman’s twelve children. Natalia and Leola are the daughters from his marriage to Mary Joan Martelly. His other daughters, Freeda, Michi, and Georgetta, come from separate relationships. Additionally, George adopted Isabella Brandie Lilja (Foreman) in 2009 and Courtney Isaac (Foreman) in 2012, further expanding the unique and close-knit Foreman family.

The Career of Mary Joan Martelly


Mary Joan Martelly embarked on her career as a nanny upon moving to the US, showcasing her dedication to caregiving. Additionally, she and her husband actively participated in various awareness campaigns related to AIDS (AIDA). Their commitment led them to volunteer for a campaign focused on preventing pediatric AIDS. In recognition of their efforts, they were jointly honored at the esteemed event, “A World of Friends Fighting AIDS,” in 2007.

Turning the spotlight to George Foreman’s remarkable career, his journey in boxing began with significant achievements. Winning a gold medal in the 1968 Summer Olympics marked his initial triumph. This period coincided with civil rights riots in the US, creating uncertainty within the African-American community about supporting the country’s policy. Despite the challenging times, George’s dedication to his sport remained unwavering, securing a medal for his nation.

In 1969, George Foreman made the pivotal decision to pursue professional boxing, undergoing rigorous training sessions. His debut pro boxing match against Don Walheim in New York City resulted in a triumphant three-round knockout. The following years saw notable victories, including a match against Joe Frazier in 1973, effectively silencing critics.

More about career

George’s journey took unexpected turns, from winning matches against opponents like Pedro Agosto in Florida in 1997 to facing setbacks like a loss to Jimmy Young in Puerto Rico. Transitioning from his boxing career, George Foreman became an ordained minister in Houston, Texas, dedicating himself to God and family. His spiritual experiences were shared on television, and he opened a youth center to further contribute positively to his community.

After a decade away from boxing, George Foreman returned at 38, surprising many. He knocked out Steve Zouski in the fourth round in Sacramento, California, despite being out of condition. He won nine more fights and defeated Cruiserweight Champion Dwight Muhammad Qawi in 1998. A 1991 pay-per-view boxing battle pitted him against Evander Holyfield for the world title.

George Foreman’s boxing, church, and community efforts demonstrate his dedication to change.

Married Life

Marital statusMarried 
SpouseGeorge Foreman (March 27, 1985)
ChildrenGeorge Foreman IV, George Foreman V, George Foreman VI, Leola Foreman, Natalia Foreman

In the realm of married life, Mary Joan Martelly and George Foreman share a lasting bond, having exchanged vows on March 27, 1985. Originating from St. Lucia, an Eastern Caribbean island nation, Mary and George’s love story unfolded over a year of dating before they took the significant step of marriage.

The couple is blessed with five children, namely Leola, Natalie, George IV, George V, and George VI. Affectionately, George and the children have endearingly nicknamed Mary “Joan,” adding a personal touch to their family dynamics.

George Foreman, no stranger to the intricacies of matrimony, had five children from previous marriages. His marital journey included four brief unions before finding enduring companionship with Mary. Notably, he married Adrienne Calhoun in 1971, divorcing her in 1974, followed by a short-lived marriage to beauty queen Cynthia Lewis from 1977 to 1979. In 1981, he married Sharon Goodson, a union that lasted just a year. His marriage to Andrea Skeete in 1982 concluded in 1985.

Mary Joan Martelly assumed the role of stepmother to George’s three stepdaughters – Michi, Freeda, and Georgetta – and two stepsons, George Jr. and George III. The Foreman family further expanded with George’s adoption of Isabella Brenda Lilja (Foreman) in 2009 and Courtney Isaac (Foreman) in 2012.

Mary and George deliberately live a low-profile life to avoid media attention. Rare public appearances emphasize their private and intimate existence. The TV Land reality show “Family Foreman,” with their children, was an exception. The show aired six episodes on July 16, 2008, revealing George’s life as a boxer and parent and giving fans a unique look at the Foreman family.

Mary Joan Martelly’s Net Worth

Mary Joan Martelly has maintained a private life, and details about her professional career and financial standing are not widely available through various sources and online platforms. While information about her net worth and professional endeavors remains elusive, some websites speculate that Mary Joan Martelly’s net worth could be approximately $500 thousand.

In contrast, her husband George Foreman’s net worth is reported to be considerably higher, estimated at around $300 million. Despite the private nature of Mary Joan’s life, the stark contrast in their reported net worth adds an intriguing layer to the couple’s financial dynamics.

Her Charity Work and Initiatives as First Lady

From 2011 until 2016, Mary Joan Martelly led several humanitarian endeavors to improve Haiti via her important platform as First Lady.

Healthcare Access

One of Martelly’s foremost priorities was to enhance healthcare access for women and children in Haiti. To achieve this, she established the Foundation Rose et Blanc, a philanthropic organization dedicated to raising funds and coordinating programs focused on prenatal and pediatric care. The foundation played a pivotal role in financing the construction of clinics in underserved areas of Haiti, providing crucial low-cost and free services. Through impactful fundraising and awareness campaigns, the foundation also equipped these clinics with essential medical resources and equipment.


Recognizing the pivotal role of education in shaping Haiti’s future, Martelly launched multiple initiatives to boost school enrollment and enhance literacy, especially among girls. The “Ti Manman Cheri” (“Dear Little Mother”) initiative, for instance, offered scholarships, school supplies, and meals to young mothers, enabling them to pursue education. The foundation additionally contributed to teacher training programs, the construction of new classrooms, and the provision of books and educational materials to schools.

Empowering Women

Martelly was a staunch advocate for empowering Haitian women through job opportunities and skills training. The Rose et Blanc Foundation collaborated with fashion brands to provide training for women to become seamstresses, offering them a path to stable jobs and income. Moreover, the foundation extended support through small business grants and microfinance loans, facilitating women in starting their enterprises.

Mary Joan Martelly relentlessly labored to improve Haiti through the foundation and other projects. Her dedication to promoting healthcare, education, and economic opportunities for women and children shaped the nation. Martelly became an outstanding Haitian leader and human rights crusader despite her unelected status.

The Enduring Legacy of Mary Joan Martelly: A Tribute to an Inspirational Educator and Community Leader

Mary Joan Martelly remembered as an influential educator and community leader, has left behind a legacy that continues to impact countless lives.

Advancing Education

With a remarkable teaching career spanning over 30 years, Mary Joan shaped young minds and served as an inspiration for students to realize their full potential. A trailblazer in bilingual and special education, she played a crucial role in providing essential resources for underserved groups. Beyond the classroom, Mary Joan mentored numerous new teachers, sharing her passion for education and offering unwavering support in their professional journeys.

Serving the Community

Mary Joan’s commitment to serving her local community was unwavering. Devoting her time to various causes and organizations, including healthcare clinics, youth programs, and immigration assistance centers, she became an integral part of community development. Through her voluntary efforts, donation drives, fundraisers, and events, Mary Joan actively worked towards creating a more equitable, inclusive, and supportive environment for everyone.

A Lasting Influence

Even after her passing, Mary Joan’s influence lives on through the lives and communities she touched. The teachers she mentored continue to shape new generations of students, carrying forward her dedication to education. Her supported clinics, youth programs, and organizations continue to help the needy. Small acts of kindness, compassion, and goodwill by Mary Joan changed lives and brought out the best in others.

A Reminder of Individual Impact

Mary Joan Martelly’s life demonstrates the ability of one person to improve the world. Her lifelong dedication to education, community service, and assisting others left a legacy of hope, opportunity, and empowerment. Her narrative inspires us to hope that a truly decent person can change the world.

Mary Joan Martelly in 2023: Philanthropy and Quietude

Mary Joan Martelly has lived in seclusion since 2023, although her husband, George Foreman, periodically appears in the media. The pair lives on a 40-acre Texas estate.

Mary Joan Martelly has lived in Texas since marrying George Foreman, finding peace on their 40-acre farm. After Mary Joan received an honor from former President Bill Clinton in 2017, the couple’s media appearances decreased.

Mary Joan and George Foreman minimize their media exposure to promote AIDS awareness and philanthropy. Their present efforts involve helping in numerous industries, showing a dedication to improving their town and beyond.

The couple’s philanthropy shows their commitment to significant causes and their modest yet impactful lives away from the public. Mary Joan Martelly and George Foreman continue to improve society in 2023.

Mary Joan Martelly’s Social Media

Source: Youtube

Media coverage of Mary Joan Martelly is unavoidable as the wife of an Olympic champion. She has appeared with her husband at media events and award presentations. More than being a caring spouse, she participates in social activities, attending conferences and award ceremonies to honor her HIV/AIDS aid.

Mary Joan Martelly keeps a quiet profile online despite her social work career and fame. Her lack of a social media profile suggests she chose to keep her personal life private. Social media is not her enemy, but she has not discussed its usage in her life. This purposeful privacy emphasizes her focus on real-world impact rather than virtual one.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Mary Joan Martelly

1. Mary Joan Martelly—who?

George Foreman’s sixth wife was Mary Joan Martelly. Born May 17, 1963, in Mon Repos, St. Lucia, she has been Foreman’s constant for over 30 years.

2. What makes Mary Joan Martelly famous?

Mary Joan Martelly was well known for marrying former boxer George Foreman. Her public reputation has also been raised by her humanitarian work, particularly in pediatric AIDS awareness.

3. How many children does Mary Joan Martelly have with George Foreman?

George Foreman and Mary Joan Martelly have five children: Leola, Natalia, George IV, George V, and George VI.

4. What did Mary Joan Martelly do before marrying George Foreman?

After migrating to the US, Mary Joan Martelly was a nanny before marrying George Foreman. Unlike her renowned husband, she has kept a low professional profile.

5. What charitable work has Mary Joan Martelly done?

Mary Joan Martelly and George Foreman have volunteered for pediatric AIDS awareness initiatives. From 2011 to 2016, she was Haiti’s First Lady, promoting healthcare, education, and women’s empowerment through her Foundation Rose et Blanc.

6. Did Mary Joan Martelly and George Foreman raise AIDS awareness?

The pair were honored at “A World of Friends Fighting AIDS” in 2007 for their pediatric AIDS awareness work. They wanted to raise awareness about AIDS among youngsters.

7. Where does Mary Joan Martelly currently live?

Since 2023, Mary Joan Martelly and George Foreman have lived in Texas. In recent years, the couple has lived quietly on a 40-acre estate.

8. Does Mary Joan Martelly use social media?

Social media profiles for Mary Joan Martelly are unknown. She keeps her personal life private and has not commented on her social media.


Mary Joan Martelly’s life shows resilience, calm strength, and a desire to help. She has supported George Foreman in and out of the ring for almost 30 years as his fifth wife. Martelly was born in St. Lucia in 1963 and has managed prominence while living a low-profile life.

Her family struggled financially after her father’s death, forcing them to work odd jobs. Martelly has lived a quiet existence, appearing occasionally in the media, such as in the 2008 reality show “Family Foreman.”

AIDS awareness is Martelly’s admirable charity work. As First Lady of Haiti from 2011 until 2016, she promoted healthcare, education, and women’s empowerment through her Foundation Rose et Blanc.

The legacy of Mary Joan Martelly goes beyond her support of her husband. Over 30 years as a teacher, she advanced bilingual and special education. Her volunteerism, philanthropy, and community involvement created a lasting impression.

In 2023, Mary Joan Martelly and George Foreman live on a 40-acre Texas estate. Despite periodic media appearances and acclaim for their philanthropy, the couple continues to help across sectors.

Despite living in the shadow of a sporting hero, Mary Joan Martelly has made her mark. From her childhood in St. Lucia to her current post in Texas, Martelly has prioritized family, philanthropy, and living a life of action over words.

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