Mr. and Mrs. J. Stephen Marks III A Sense of Honor and Integrity
J. Stephen (Steve) Marks III attended Washington and Lee in an era when Zeta Beta Tau was one of two active Jewish fraternities on campus. In addition to forming life-long friendships with his ZBT brothers, he also worked on the Calyx staff. He received his B.S. in 1959 and fulfilled his ROTC requirement by serving in the Army in France for almost three years.
Marks returned home to Tennessee and went to work at the Credit Bureau of Memphis in 1962. In 1963 he founded Credit Bureau Marketing, Inc., to act as a facilitator to national credit grantors to assist them in issuing credit cards to consumers. After serving oil companies that issued credit cards, in the late 1970s the company added more than 250 retail and banking clients and became the largest single user of credit information in the United States.
Marks moved CBM to Houston in 1972 and sold the company to Equifax Inc. in 1982. He continued to work for Equifax in various capacities until his retirement in 1994.
Marks and his wife, Mary Lynn, are well known for their volunteer and philanthropic endeavors in Houston and beyond. Marks' service to Washington and Lee includes the national campaign steering committee for the On the Shoulders of Giants Campaign, the Development Council, and the Board of Trustees. He co-chaired his 50th reunion and was on the committee for his 55th reunion. Mary Lynn was recruited to contribute her event planning skills to the dedication ceremony for the Lenfest Center.
The couple's philanthropy to Washington and Lee includes significant support for Wilson Hall, The Williams School, the Global Learning Program, the John and Anne Wilson Honor Scholarship, and the Francis Pendleton Gaines Scholarship. Marks helped inspire his Class of 1959 ZBT brothers to support the construction of a new Hillel House, and they responded with a $1.1 million reunion gift.
The Marks have two children, a daughter Lisa and a son Stephen, and five grandchildren.
W&L gave me a sense of honor and integrity in all that I do and provided me the building blocks to enhance all aspects of my life. J. Stephen Marks III '59