J. R. Martinez, expecting his first child. (JASON REDMOND/REUTERS)

“Dancing With the Stars” champion J.R. Martinez and his girlfriend, Diana Gonzalez-Jones, are expecting their first child.

People has confirmed that the one-time soap star and Gonzalez-Jones will welcome a baby in the spring. The magazine reports that the couple, who met back in 2008 when he was on “All My Children” and she was working as an assistant to the show’s executive producer, are expecting a girl.

“2011 has been full of a lot of surprises and opportunities and ultimately, a lot of blessings,” Martinez — an Army veteran who served in Iraq until a 2003 land mine explosion left him with severe burn injuries — tells the magazine. ”Diana and I were just asking ourselves, ‘How is 2012 going to top 2011?’  Well, we have our answer!”

Martinez, who cha-cha-cha’d to victory with partner Karina Smirnoff on the most recent season of “Dancing With the Stars,” also has another responsibility to assume in 2012. On New Year’s Day, he will serve as grand marshal of the Tournament of Roses parade.