Mark’s first career began in the IT industry. In 1986, he left it to work at Cornell University on a National Science Foundation project that connected National Supercomputers and University computer networks together. For the next fourteen years, he provided engineering and operations expertise in the research and development of what we now call the Internet. He retired from Internet community in 2000 and spent the next decade raising his triplet daughters with his wife, Heidi, on their 64-acre working farm near Ithaca, New York.
Mark shared his interest in stones and fossils with his daughters when they purchased their first rock tumbler. This eventually lead to the purchase of other lapidary tools and progressed steadily to a full lapidary studio that facilitated cabbing, carving, intarsia, and faceting. Many hours were spent in acquiring the knowledge and skill to work with the various tools and materials. In 2014, Mark acquired lapidary material inventory from several rough gemstone brokers and launched Hashnu Stones and Gems LLC, which provides lapidary materials, faceting equipment, training, and lapidary services to an international market of lapidarist, jewelers, artists, and collectors.
Mark’s passion lies in developing and experimenting with new and revised techniques and designs to create unique gemstone creations, pushing the boundaries of today’s lapidary renaissance.