Bilingual and bicultural, with strong family and business ties to Costa Rica and Chile, he credits his success as a negotiator, communicator, and senior manager to his ability to relate to people, to a deep understanding of the various cultures of the western hemisphere, the subtleties of their language, and to an unwavering commitment to integrity. For his clients, these qualities translate into substantial savings in time, money, and frustration in their transactions.
Mark first spread his wings in marketing leadership in Costa Rica in 1977, assisting his father (known today as the Father of Ecotourism in Costa Rica) in new ventures, Swiss Travel Service and The Rio Colorado Lodge. As Vice President of Marketing, he helped develop the operation into the largest receptive tour company in Costa Rica and a key promotional firm for Costa Rica. The company pioneered the cruise ship, receptive tourism, eco-tourism, and sports fishing industries in Costa Rica, organizing them into entities generating substantial and sustainable revenues for the Costa Rican people and, not incidentally, becoming forces for Rainforest conservation.
Mark initiated the first Catch & Release program in the Costa Rican sports fishing industry, now a standard; the ground-breaking program led him to a Washington, DC relationship that developed tagging programs and mounted a serious interest in the international saltwater Catch & Release initiative.
As founder of the Costa Rican Sport Fisherman’s Conservation Association, Fields also recognized the dangers to indigenous fishermen, the environment, and the sport fishing industry from the mass net fishing by commercial fishing fleets in the river mouths and over the reefs. His response was innovative and effective: he authored and distributed throughout the coastal communities in Costa Rica, in English and in Spanish, a small fictional storybook describing the potential long-term effects of non-regulated commercial fishing practices, allowing the reader to choose from a number of endings, each complete with repercussions. With an estimated 100,000 + currently distributed throughout Costa Rican communities and schools, it has become an influential educational tool for coastal conservation.
During his four-year service as Assistant to the President of the Costa Rica Tourism Institute and Special Advisor to the Minister of Economy on Tourism, in 1986 Fields led a delegation to New York, inviting the most distinguished World Hotels to consider Costa Rica in their future development plans. Foreseeing the imminent development of Costa Rica’s coasts, during his work with the Costa Rican government, he proposed a Master Plan for coastal development designed to brand it as an ecologically conscious “Mediterranean of the Caribbean” coastal tourist destination.
His strong interest in conservation and indigenous cultures also led him to pioneer a wide-ranging array of other organizations: “A Far Away Place” an export/import retail business that became a leading retailer of world music and indigenous art in the United States; Mark Fields Events, an event production business producing concerts and cultural events in Asheville; The EarthDance Institute, a not for profit (501C3) to recruit, organize, train, and inspire high school students in environmental issues throughout the Western Hemisphere (with a distinguished board of advisors comprised of international business, political, and literary leaders).
Mark Fields Real Estate's sophisticated skills as an international branding and marketing specialist for Real Estate products provide his clients with a superior level of marketing services for high-end residential and luxury estates.