Don Mark became another household name to people in the Sudbury area as a result of his 20-year run on air. His career in broadcasting was never planned and never expected.
Don is originally from Toronto. He worked as a ski instructor at Searchmont in Sault Ste. Marie. One of his classes involved a group of people from one of the area radio stations. He eventually developed a friendship with the Program Director who offered him a part-time job as a disc jockey. He enjoyed the work and within only weeks accepted a full-time on-air position at the old CKCY in Sault Ste. Marie. He found himself at another station in the Soo and then at North Bay. Finally he was on the air at CKSO AM in the early 1980's replacing Michael Cranston.
He moved over to television in the fall of 1984 on an invitation from CKSO TV Producer Larry Gavin. At that time CKSO AM and CIGM FM were not under the same ownership as television. Mark was hired to host a noon-hour talk show, but he worked on other projects like the Reach for the Top quiz show.
Mark went on to help produce and host a popular outdoor show, "Fishing the North". It was a weekly half-hour show in which Mark and a small crew travelled to various fishing spots around Ontario. The show ran from 1991 to 1995 with very popular ratings. It became one of the most watched outdoors programs in Canada. With the show carried on satellite, people as far away as Alaska and all over North America could view the program.
Don retired from broadcasting, signing off on Friday, January 21st of 2005 on MCTV's Noon-Hour Television Show. Mark accepted a new job as a Communications Specialist with the Sudbury office of the Ministry of Natural Resources.
Mark reflects on his broadcasting career as one filled with fun and great memories and with lots of stories to tell. Like the majority of people getting started in the business 30 and 40 years ago, Mark entered with no diploma or degree in radio and television, but rather with an undying love for the business.
Mark also ran for Sudbury MPP for the Conservatives in 1995 and for Regional Chair of Sudbury in 1997. He picked up 13,000 votes each time.
Although from the south, Mark has become a true Northerner. His wife is from the north and their five children are born and raised in the north. They love the people, the area and the clean air.