“Cakes are very personal creations for temporary enjoyment. They should reflect the personality of the person for whom the celebration is given as well as the personal signature of the designer.” Mark began his working life as a web developer. Seeking inspiration and a career about which he was passionate, Mark left the IT world to pursue a career in pastry. Years later, he is a Certified Master Sugar Artist and Culinary Applications Chef for Barry Callebaut. He has owned two successful businesses in the Chicago area: an exclusive wedding cake boutique, and a separate retail bakery. He has been heavily involved in a number of professional baking organizations, including the Retail Bakers Association, where he was the chair of the certification program for master bakers and cake decorators. Throughout his career Mark has been recognized numerous times for his craftsmanship. In 2013 he was honored by Dessert Professional Magazine as one of Top Ten Cake Designers in North America. Prior to joining the Chocolate Academy in Chicago, Mark was an instructor at the French Pastry School. He is on the Editorial Advisory Board of American Cake Decorating magazine, and is an Adjudicator for Sugar Artist Certification for the International Cake Exploration Societé. His work has been featured on The Food Network, HGTV, Travel Channel, ABC7 Chicago, and TLC.