Mark joined the NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador program in 2019 where he successfully planned and implemented over 30 community-based events throughout east-central and northern Iowa, ranging in size from four to 3,000 people in attendance.
Mark holds a bachelor’s degree in geology from Wright State University and a master’s degree in astronomy from Swinburne University of Technology. He has always displayed his passion and enthusiasm for the sciences, especially astronomy and has taught college astronomy courses at McKendree University and Dickinson College where he enjoyed interacting with the students.
In addition, he worked for the Pennsylvania Geological Survey and has worked in several planetaria. He started out as a planetarium specialist at the W.A. Gayle Planetarium in Montgomery, Alabama. He then served as Senior Astronomer at the St. Louis Science Center’s James S. McDonnell Planetarium and has done consulting work and guest speaking for the O.J. Peterson Planetarium at Emporia State University.
Mark is an avid photographer and astro-photographer who enjoys observing and imaging the night sky through his telescopes and cameras. He is passionate about conducting educational public outreach and bringing the concepts of astronomy down to the human level of understanding. For Mark, it is the darkness and beauty of the night sky that brings light to his day.
Past Events Hosted By This Ambassador:
International Observe the Moon NIght Jones County Historical Society & Edinburgh Pioneer Village, 13838 Edinburgh Road
Apollo 11 - Achieving the Goal Clarksville Public Library
Westfield Elementary Science Night Westfield Elementary School
Telescope Moon and Planet Viewing Clarksville Public Library