Mark Nelson of Queens, NY was educated in the Long Island School System. He holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Sociology from Virginia State University and a Masters in Criminal Justice from John Jay College in New York City. He has 17 years of experience combined working with the Police Athletic League, Boys and Girls Clubs and in the Juvenile Detention sector. Mark has dedicated his life to helping youth at risk as demonstrated in various positions that he has held. Mark worked for Rockaway Development & Revitalization Corporation in Far Rockaway, NY where he was a Youth Counseling Coordinator. There he placed youth between the ages of 14-24 and adults in various jobs and conducted counseling sessions and career readiness workshops in local schools, the community and offices of the Rockaway Development Center.
Mark later worked for the New York City Dept. of Probation for 5 years as a Resource Specialist. There he established and maintained an ongoing liaison of networking and advocacy with public and private provider agencies providing services in such areas as mental health, alcohol and substance abuse, domestic violence, sex offenders, vocational training, job development and job placement. Mark also maintained on-site consultation and problem resolution with Intense Supervision Professionals and Management staff regarding the adequacy and availability of need based services with particular emphasis on the referral process.
He became a Probation Officer where he provided enhanced supervision services including frequent office interviews, home visits and collateral contacts. He participated in a wide range of group counseling activities including weekly cognitive skills training, life strategies and groups. He also participated in a wide range of cultural/recreational activities. Mark also served as Youth Director for his local church in Far Rockaway, NY. While in this position he led a very successful group called Teens Living for Christ. In 1997 Mark relocated to Atlanta, GA where he worked for the Marietta Youth Detention Services for 4 ½ years.
Mark decided to take a different approach to serving youth. He wanted to go back to being involved with youth on the preventive end instead of in the area detention. He began working at Seeds of Faith Christian Academy as the Program Director of their After school Program and Summer Camp. He was there for five years when God called him to the Florida to serve as the Youth Pastor at Solid Rock Church of God in Kissimmee, FL. Mark now resides in Florida with his wife, Rachel, and their two sons Mark II and Mitchell.
At Solid Rock
Mark gives oversight to the IMPACT YOUTH MINISTRIES at Solid Rock Church of God. The goal of the ministry is to impact the lives of the children and youth in the community by teaching them about Jesus Christ and being a living witness before them. He will guide the ministry with God’s wisdom in offering mentorship, tutoring, computer classes and recreational activities to name a few. Currently IMPACT YOUTH MINISTRIES meets every Saturday from 2:00 pm to 7:00 pm.