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Published on Feb 21, 2012
Investment banker turned farmer, Mark's career path has taken some unique turns to his current position operating Certified Farmers' Markets. Known by many as "Farmer Mark" or "Tomatoes", he is a farmers' market fanatic, slow food supporter and healthy eating advocate. He is passionate about supporting small farmers and is involved with the State's Certified Farmers' Market Advisory Committee.
Mark received a hands-on agricultural education from entrepreneurial ventures in the vegetable seed breeding industry and six years as a small farmer, growing primarily tomatoes, cucumbers and other assorted vegetables hydroponically, conventionally and organically in Ventura County.
Prior to his unforeseen agricultural ventures, Mark received a Finance degree from the University of Wisconsin, spent four years in Investment Banking and received an MBA from The Anderson School at UCLA. He currently serves as Executive Director of Sprouts of Promise Foundation (sproutsofpromise.org), a non-profit promoting the importance of fruits and vegetables in a healthy diet. He currently manages three (3) Certified Farmers' Markets, located in Playa Vista (playavistaFM.com), Newport Beach (newportbeachFM.com) and Costa Mesa (socoFM.com).
In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TED has created a program called TEDx. TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. Our event is called TEDxManhattanBeach, where x = independently organized TED event. At our TEDxManhattanBeach event, TEDTalks video and live speakers will combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events, including ours, are self-organized.