Technology, Training, and Access. For All.
STEM and Success
Education plus technology equals success. In accordance with STEM related efforts, state and nationwide, the Foundation promotes training, education and resource development for aspiring young achievers.
Our students are not just wise, but TechWise. We directly provide technological education and training through community efforts like the Apalachee Ridge Tech Center. Underexposed youth are learning the tech skills they want and need.
In addition to our “in house” efforts, the Foundation is expanding through partnerships. We provide support, equipment, training, and space for other organizations and individuals who share our passion for reaching out to the underexposed.
Techwise Code Academy at Apalachee Ridge
The Jane and John Marks Foundation is a proud sponsor and supporter of local efforts to engage with the underexposed on a local level in Tallahassee, Florida.To this end, we conducted our first session of the Techwise Code Academy at the Apalachee Ridge Tech Center; a repurposed residence in a neighborhood convenient to our students. Using the Raspberry Pi, we introduced 30 young men and women to the possibilities and benefits of STEM learning.
Afterschool STEM with Ladies Learning to Lead
Building on the success of our first program, we soon partnered with the Ladies Learning to Lead (L3) program to build and execute an afterschool STEM training program. Students learned skills in technology and coding, as well as public presentation and tech startup ideation.
Media and Documentation
The first documentHere is the first draft of the documentation presented by John IV to John III. As you can see, some of the branding and ideas have been modified, but the core values are still present. Link to pdf
Declaration of IntentHere you can find our latest "Declaration of Intent" -- a detailed look at our plans. (Link forthcoming)
Two sides to the Digital Divide.
The Digital Divide You Know.
As our society has become more interconnected, Internet access is no longer a luxury, but a necessity. However, for too many Americans, their broadband Internet experience is inadequate. Specifically, individuals in unserved and underserved communities often have access that is practically inferior to those living in more affluent conditions -- if they have it at all. This is the (demand side) Digital Divide.
The "Supply-Side Digital Divide"
However, there is another digital divide, one that affects the underexposed not as consumers, but as creators. Currently, many communities and individuals do not have the technological or human resources that would allow them to develop and deploy technologies and innovations that can be utilized on and with the internet. This is the "supply-side" Digital Divide.
The goal of the Foundation is to engage in activities and services that will address issues related to the supply-side digital divide.
Who we are.
Jane A. Marks, M.A., LMFT, LMHC, has been a practicing psychotherapist in the Tallahassee area for the past 40 years. She serves as a motivational speaker to address the needs of children and teens. She is a member of many charitable organizations and sits as a member of various boards of directors including Florida State University’s Friends of Dance, Boys Town, the Tallahassee Memorial Foundation, and San Luis Mission Foundation.
John R. Marks, III is the former Mayor of the City of Tallahassee, Florida, (2003-2014.) He served eight years on the Florida Public Service Commission and spent the last two as its Chairman. He served on the FPSC during the divestiture of AT&T and was instrumental in the implementation of the Federal Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA). Before being appointed, he served as an Administrative Law Judge on the Commission. He has been an adjunct professor at FSU’s College of Law, teaching utility regulatory law and a faculty member of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners’ utility rate school.
John R. Marks, IV currently serves as the Chair of the Master’s in Information Technology program at Florida State University. He received his B.S. degree in 1999 from Harvard University and his Juris Doctorate in 2003 from Columbia University. He is a member of the Florida bar. He teaches information policy, legal research, web programming, communications, and project management. His career has focused on the social implications of internet broadband and new media technologies.
Farhood Basiri is the Managing Partner of Bellwether Software, a web and mobile software development company. He is a former Assistant Director of Communications & Alumni Affairs at Florida State University, and currently teaches Florida’s only mobile application development courses at a public university.
Terrance McNeil is an instructional technologist for the Florida A&M University College of Education and the Executive Director of the Community Neighborhood Renaissance Partnership, and currently manages the Apalachee Ridge Technology Learning Center for the City of Tallahassee. He has helped close the digital divide for several communities, educated thousands of students and channeled millions of dollars in resources for the purpose of community building. He currently holds a B.S. in Political Science and a Masters’ in Educational Technology, and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership at Florida A&M University.
Lucas von Hollen has taken the title of Techno Wizard, and has a BS in Information Technology and Theatre from Florida State University. Since 2011, he has been teaching specialty classes at various middle and high schools on topics ranging from game design to computer hardware to basic technical literacy. He currently works as a technical consultant for several companies and businesses in the Tallahassee area. As far as we are able to determine, he is currently the only official wizard in Tallahassee.
Michael Sutter is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Information Technology at Florida State University where he specializes in leadership and management. Prior to joining the foundation, he acted as the statewide Community Outreach Coordinator for the Florida Relay Service, a nonprofit agency dedicated to advocating for and educating persons with disabilities. Michael is an organization and communication dynamo. His rich experience in community development and cultural diversity awareness is precisely what the foundation needs to execute its mission.
Maria Davis is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Information Technology at Florida State University, specializing in Information Management. In her past life, she was a Respiratory Therapist and an Event Coordinator for a non-profit organization. For several years, she used her expertise to plan outreach programs and activities which have positively impacted the lives of young people in Leon and the surrounding counties. Maria decided to get involved because she feels connected to the mission of the Jane and John Marks Foundation and is passionate about the work that is being done for the youth.
Get Involved! Please contact us if you are interested in recieving further information.
The mission of the Jane and John Marks Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, is to improve the lives of citizens through advocacy and outreach. The Foundation recognizes a path to a creative society via sustainable economic growth and education, fueled by emerging technology.