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Mark Drapeau's New Gig


Mark Drapeau has been a member of the DC tech community for several years, from helping DOD understand how tech startups would influence government rules on social media to helping founders and creatives understand Microsoft as a tech innovator in their ecosystem. Now he’s the Application Developers Alliance’s senior director of membership for North America. He talked to Bisnow yesterday about his new gig and what he does in his free time. 

Bisnow: So what’s the App Developers Alliance?

Mark: A nonprofit global membership organization that supports developers as creators, innovators and entrepreneurs. We work with individual developers, tech startups and larger companies, and organizations that use developer talent. In four years the Alliance has grown to 200 companies and tens of thousands of individual developers. 

Bisnow: Tell us about your new job.

Mark: I’m responsible for growing the Alliance’s membership and coordinating memberships services with the organization’s policy, research and events. 

Bisnow: So will you be traveling all over North America?

Mark: I’ll go anywhere the work takes me, but with a focus on key metro areas with tech development and innovation like NYC, LA, Boston and the Bay area. 

Bisnow: What’s on your professional bucket list?

Mark: Publishing one outstanding book of note that people will read and refer to many years later.


Bisnow: You’ve had so many different roles in DC. What are some of the lessons you’ve learned?

Mark: That life is long and this town is small, which can be an advantage or disadvantage depending on how you play your cards. 

Bisnow: Where are you originally from and what brought you to DC?

Mark: Western Massachusetts. Go Patriots! (I’m now also a genuine Redskins fan.) Before coming to DC, I was a neuroscientist at NYU, with a desire to apply my research, analysis and communications skills to broader challenges. Something called the AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellowship brought me to the DOD.  

Bisnow: How do you spend your free time?

Mark: I’m really boring—socialize with friends, hike in Rock Creek Park, watch quite a lot of TV and movies and try to read as much as possible. I’m also an amateur connoisseur of coffee, wine and bourbon.

Bisnow: What’s on your personal bucket list?

Mark: Attending the Kennedy Center Honors without sneaking in and getting that elusive selfie with fellow Bay Stater Maria Menounos. I tried at last year's MSNBC White House Correspondents Dinner after-party but my phone died at the moment of snapping. 

Bisnow: Favorite DC restaurants?

Mark: My main "hangouts" are Sidecar at PJ Clarke’s and Ghibellina.

Bisnow: What’s the most startling fact about you?

Mark: People are frequently surprised by my lowbrow side—for instance, I watch tons of Bravo TV. I'm addicted to Vanderpump Rules at the moment.