Mark Parker is the current CEO of global sportswear giant Nike, Inc. Born in Poughkeepsie, New York, Parker attended Penn State University and graduated in 1977 with a Bachelor’s of Political Science.
He joined Nike as a footwear designer two years later in 1979, becoming Division Vice President in 1989, General Manager in 1993, and Vice President of Global Footwear in 1998. Serving as co-president with Charlie Denson in 2001, Parker was appointed as the company’s chief executive in 2006. Parker’s tenure as Nike’s CEO has been marked by a hands-on approach to the design direction of the company, with Parker still participating in the shoe design and innovation process via the core “HTM” research and development team, consisting of Tinker Hatfield, Hiroshi Fujiwara, and himself.
Parker is also known for bringing Nike into the realm of fashion, appealing to youth worldwide by situating Nike’s sneakers as must-have fashion items. Since his appointment as CEO, Nike has experienced increases in annual revenue of 60 percent, profit increases of 57 percent, and doubling of its market cap.
Parker currently lives with his wife and three children.