I consider myself from Barre Mills/West Salem but have lived in many other places over my life and currently live in Sparta with my partner, Lloyd. My main jobs have been a high school instructor (Shoreland Lutheran High School 12 years) and retail supervisor (JCPenney 18 years). Currently, my “retirement job” is with Hansen’s IGA in Sparta, where my primary responsibilities are to keep the liquor department stocked and the greenhouse plants watered and thriving.
My choral career started with singing in my church choir beginning in eighth grade and then the Luther High School Concert Choir and “Sound Foundation”, Luther’s version of a show choir. Later on I sang in the University Singers at UW-L and a madrigal group also at UW-L, the Ad Hoc Singers in Milwaukee and The Lutheran Chorale also in Milwaukee. When I moved back to West Salem in 1999 I joined Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in LaCrosse and one of the basses in that church choir, Marc Williams, told me about the LaCrosse Chamber Chorale and encouraged me to try out with Paul Rusterholz, which I did. The rest is history – I am now past 20 seasons with the Chamber Chorale and find myself being one of the “oldtimers” in the Chorale.
I have two grown children, Tony and Rachel. Tony and his wife Casey live in Brown Deer, WI and have two boys, Carter and Harrison; Rachel and her husband Eric live in West Salem with three children, Ari, Jaxon, and Bailey. Besides the Chamber Chorale, I love to go camping, read, work on my family tree, and especially to garden. I am a member of the North American Lily Society and two regional Lily Society affiliates – the North Star Lily Society of Minnesota and the Iowa Regional Lily Society. I have been to two national conventions of the North American Lily Society in Des Moines and Boston and hope to go again to future shows. I currently have more than 200 different hybrids and species of lilies growing in my garden and I have begun to breed and grow new lilies in my garden and currently have several hundred seedlings growing.
Born in 1973, Mark has had music lessons and training from that time forward. He has been involved with choirs and choral singing since 1983, and joined the Chamber Chorale in 2005. While Mark thoroughly enjoys choral singing and music, he is also an avid collector of recordings and sounds of all sorts. Post-Punk is a favorite music genre of his, as some sonic textures or environments can be as engaging for a listener as harmony and melody can be. Mark also enjoys acting in community theater in Spring Grove, Minnesota, where he lives. Mark and his wife Sarah dearly love their cat Moira.