“We’re a relationship firm, not a transactional firm.”
Mark Watson has always felt quite at home on water. It goes back to when he was an eight-year-old fetching squirrels his grandpa would shoot from the porch of his cottage on the Muskingum River below Duncan Falls.
“It was so cool because I got to hang out with my grandfather, my uncles and a bunch of their friends. Grandpa kept three things in the fridge – beer, bait and limburger cheese. There was an island in the middle of the river, and I used to row to it, tie off and fish all day.”
Mark’s grandparents on his paternal side would take him fishing on a 14-foot jon boat to a spot they knew. They’d pass through an old railroad tunnel, come out into a bay marked with fallen trees and catch bass until they were done. Then when his mother married his step-dad, who had a membership at the Buckeye Lake Yacht Club, Mark took up sailing.
“Water was a big thing for me, still is,” Mark says. “For years, I had had a dream of living aboard a trawler and cruising the islands … Finally, I took three training classes with my wife, Kathy. Ever since then, about twice a year, I charter boats, captain the boats and head for the islands.”
A few months before this writing, Mark and Kathy’s daughter, Kaleigh, was married in the British Virgin Islands aboard a boat he chartered. One of his most joyous moments is captured in a photograph framed in his office of Kaleigh and her husband on their wedding day.
Kathy was a co-valedictorian of her class at Zanesville High. Mark’s mother will tell you Kathy is the main reason her son is still alive – he was a bit of a risk taker early on, not to mention a cliff diver. He says she was his keel, which seems apt.
He and his wife attend every Ohio State University football home game. They enjoy target shooting. One day, he would like to visit the 15th Century Inca capital of Machu Picchu in Peru and explore the Galapagos Islands.
Like his partners, Mark’s motivation is helping his clients avoid problems and, when they do arise, fixing them. He talks about what sets the firm apart: “We match our client to the appropriate attorney in the firm depending on the client’s needs and our respective areas of practice. Also, we’re a relationship firm, not a transactional firm. Our aim is to nail down what your goals are and help you realize them over the long haul.”