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Hi I'm Mark

I move around a lot. I build things. I learn languages. I play hard. I am a husband and a father of 4. I’m a Mormon.

About Me

I have lived in lots of places – 17 to be exact. My mom taught us that each place would offer cool things to do and unique people to meet…we just had to explore and engage. Sometimes it was hard and awkward, but I really have loved each place. Along the way I picked up a variety of hobbies (more than I can list here). Mountain biking, camping, riding four-wheelers, and taking the kayaks to look for cliff-jumping spots have been my favorites over the last couple of years. I love learning. I graduated from BYU with a degree in comparative literature and French after realizing that I enjoyed the persuasive and informative power of literature and language more than engineering. I worked in the family business for a couple of years then went to Notre Dame to get an MBA. I spent the next several years analyzing businesses and operating investments. Along the way, I studied Mandarin and Spanish and worked on a PhD in strategic management. Now I buy and refurbish rental homes. I spend a lot of time working, learning, and playing, but raising a family is what I do. I come from a family of six kids; my wife is the oldest of seven. Kids haven’t come easy to our family, but together we have four, including twins. Our son has cerebral palsy. We hope to adopt at least one more. We spend lots time coordinating schedules, doing chores, making sure each child is getting what he or she needs, and planning ways to get out and have some fun.

Why I am a Mormon

I grew up with parents who were devoted Mormons. But when I was in high school, I feared that my being a Mormon would mean that I would miss out on a lot of fun and that I would be restricted by a bunch of stifling do’s and don’ts. Two things happened during my first year of college: first, I had a couple of roommates who were good Mormons and we had a ton of fun together without even considering breaking any rules; second, I learned that following the commandments and counsels of church leaders helped me to avoid nasty problems common among people I knew. I made the decision that the church and its teachings were good and that I could be plenty happy living within those teachings. Admittedly, it took some time before full impact of that decision made it through all areas of my life, and there were some hard times for me and my family. But now, I have no reservations about living my faith. The words of the prophets help me to be a better husband, a better father, and a better friend. I know who I am and what is most important. When my weaknesses emerge and my failures start stacking up, I know that I am not alone and don’t need to be discouraged. I work hard to identify and reject Satan’s lies. I remember to look to Jesus and to the prophets. I study what they say and find ways to be more obedient, to repent, and to exercise faith. I continue to be amazed at the freedom of spirit and the peace of mind that comes from submitting to their inspired teachings. I am a Mormon because being a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints helps me to be my best me.

How I live my faith

I do things every day to live my faith. Each morning I pray and read from the scriptures. Each week I visit our local temple and attend church. Each month, with a companion, I visit a few families in our congregation. We give a short Christian message and look for ways to serve the family. These things help me to remember who I am and what is most important. As a family, we have daily prayer and scripture study. We have “family night” one night a week. We sing, discuss about a spiritual principle, play games, and have a treat. Once a month I sit which each one of my kids and chat. Sounds pretty idyllic, eh? Maybe, but it is what I do. When I live my faith, I am a lot more patient and my family seems to get along better. Over the years, I have served in a variety of roles in our local congregation. For example, I worked with teenagers as Scoutmaster. I enjoyed introducing young men to different skills, guiding and watching as they solved problems on campouts, and teaching from the scriptures as they learned to navigate life. I was the leader of a group of young husbands and fathers. I was responsible for Sunday instruction and coordinated lots of service projects. I visited families struggling financially during the recent economic downturn. We developed plans based on the teachings of prophets to turn stress, frustration, and despair into opportunities to exercise faith in the Savior. Several families enjoyed miraculous blessings as they followed their plan. Now, I am responsible to coordinate our local missionary efforts and to help new members integrate into the church. Also, I regularly address congregations on topics chosen to help members have faith in Jesus Christ and to strengthen their marriages and families.