Mark Brender has served in the U.S. Navy as a Public Affairs Officer, a producer and reporter for ABC News, in senior executive positions in high-technology businesses and currently serves as the Executive Director of a foundation. He has expertise in strategic and crisis communications, seat-of-government public affairs, business and investor relations and foundation management.
After serving ten years as a Public Affairs Officer, Brender entered the naval reserves and retired as a Commander in 1991. While on active duty, he served at sea as a Surface Warfare Officer, as a spokesman in the Office of the Chief of Information for the Navy in the Pentagon, as assistant fleet public affairs officer with the U.S. Sixth Fleet in Europe and as a spokesman and information officer in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs in the Pentagon. Brender also served as a White House Military Social Aide to two presidents. Brender has a keen understanding of strategic communications at both national and local levels.
After serving a decade on active duty in the U.S. Navy, Brender became a journalist for ABC News. He served as a network radio reporter, an assignment editor and Pentagon Producer for the network. He has extensive, hands-on experience in covering military and national security affairs. He covered hundreds of breaking news stories over his career and has an intimate knowledge of network news operations. In the mid-1980’s, while at ABC, he formed the Radio and Television News Directors Association ‘Remote Sensing Task Force.’ The goal of the task force was to begin to clear the way for high-resolution satellite imagery to move from the secret world of intelligence to the commercial sector.
After serving sixteen years at ABC News, Brender moved into the business community first as director of Washington Operations for Colorado-based Space Imaging and later as the vice president of Communications and Marketing for Dulles, Virginia-based GeoEye, Inc. GeoEye (NASDAQ: GEOY) owns and operates the high-resolution IKONOS and GeoEye-1 Earth-imaging satellites. They are a key provider of imagery to the intelligence community and to Google, Inc. for use in Google Earth and Maps. Brender is a leading expert in the field of commercial satellite remote sensing. He was first to provide high-resolution satellite imagery of breaking news stories on the Earth and has been involved in policy discussions regarding regulatory issues surrounding this new technology field.
In 2007, while at GeoEye, Brender formed the GeoEye Foundation. The Foundation, a registered 501(c)(3) entity based in Virginia, provides free satellite imagery to students at universities around the world who request it for research. The Foundation also provides imagery to non-governmental organizations that need imagery to support humanitarian and relief operations. In 2010, Brender left GeoEye and became the Executive Director of the company’s foundation. Brender serves on the Board of Advisors of Thermopylae Science and Technology, the Board of Advisors of the UN’s International Union for Conservation of Nature and several editorial advisory boards of magazines that specialize in the satellite imaging and geospatial technology industry. Brender has an undergraduate degree from Miami University in Ohio and a Masters Degree in Public Relations from the School of Business at American University in Washington, D.C.