With 100 percent of the precincts reporting Tuesday night, Martinez had 55 percent of the votes and Cindy Montanez had 45 percent. The seat was left open by Tony Cardenas, who won an election to Congress.
Martinez will be the only woman on the Los Angeles City Council. The current mayor is male, as is the city attorney, city controller and all 14 other members of the city council.
"I remember growing up there were five women on the council when I was in elementary school. Now we're down to one, so what does that say about the 2nd largest city in the country?" said Martinez.
Montanez agrees on the need for female leadership.
"Child abuse, pay equity - there's a lot of issues that it's important just to make sure that we have a female voice," Montanez said.
Jan Perry spent the last four years as the only female on the council and just left because of term limits.
"If you're in an all-male environment, there's often, it's almost like a team mentality where people fall into line, said Perry.
I asked for her advice to the new councilwoman.
"That she always has the support of the community and they will be the wind for her sails," Perry said.