Meet Mark Williams
By Beverly J. Clark, Publicity Director
Mark Williams retired from L.A. Dept. of Water and Power in 2011 after 22 years of service as a Structural Engineering Associate in the Power System. Mark says he had a wonderful career with LADWP. “I enjoy retirement with equal enthusiasm.” He has been a regular reader of Alive! since retiring and recently read a “Retirees on the Move” article that inspired him to tell his story.
Mark has been married to his wonderful wife, Irene, for 51 years, and they have one son, Josh.
What do you do to keep busy in retirement?
“I have maintained a lifelong passion for playing music. In my lifetime, I have played with various musical ensembles with various degrees of proficiency and different musical instruments.
“Prior to retirement, I focused on playing the cello. In 2014, my cello teacher, Ms. Agnieszka Borzuchowski, and I formed the Long Beach Chamber Music Group. She conducts, teaches and coaches our group. I take care of the administration and provide financial support. We are solely funded through private donations. We offer adult string players the opportunity to play in an ensemble group with a professional musician/conductor. Our group rehearses weekly and has performed three free public concerts annually since its inception.
“Approximately 50 percent of our musicians are Retirees. I am proud to say that one of our violinists is also a retired L.A. City employee. Our repertoire consists primarily of classical themes, movie themes, popular music, traditional and folk themes, or any interesting piece of music.
“I am also a Board Member of the La Mirada Symphony Association. The La Mirada Symphony is a community symphony orchestra that has been performing free public concerts for 60 years. I would like to encourage L.A. City Retirees and employees to join our group, to attend our concerts or to participate in musical organizations. It keeps the mind active, develops new friendships and is extremely satisfying. There is a Facebook page under Long Beach Chamber Music Group where we post upcoming concerts and updates regarding our orchestra.”
What do you miss or don’t miss about your years of service to the City of Los Angeles?
“I truly enjoyed my job with Water and Power. I had very interesting assignments, and each day coming in to work I looked forward to expecting the unexpected. Every day there was a variety of tasks and something new to do. Most of all, I miss the interaction with the wonderful people I worked with. The only thing I do not miss is the two hours of commute time each work day.”
Any words of wisdom?
“Working with the community is a worthy cause. I have an odd theory: When you give, you receive far more than you give.
“Find something interesting that truly interests you and get involved. Always keep learning. There are two important lessons I have learned from studying music: To perform well, one must be able to focus and to listen well. Mastering these two skills is useful in all aspects of life. I believe that most successful people have mastered these skills.
“And, to those who are just entering the workforce or are still working, start saving and investing now! A healthy retirement fund can provide options and opportunities to enrich one’s life by the time one retires.
If any readers who play the violin, viola, cello or string bassare interested in joining Mark’s group, please contact Mark Williams by email at email@example.com. The group would love to welcome you to an exciting and satisfying a musical adventure.