Mark Walter and the gift of Christmas future
December 12th, 2017
After an unpredictable year in business and baseball, Chicago businessman Mark Walter is enjoying the reliable pleasure of Goodman Theatre’s production of “A Christmas Carol.”
The Charles Dickens’ classic has had 40 years of staying power at the Goodman and many of those years have been thanks in part to Walter and his wife, Kimbra. The couple have been familiar faces in the audience dating back to when their children were young. Year after year, they’ve also been major donors to the show.
“We support the Goodman broadly, but on a personal basis, we feel the production of ‘A Christmas Carol’ is a wonderful Chicago and family tradition with a good message for all,” Walter told me in an email through a spokesman.
The show’s uplifting and dependable story line surely come as a relief after the tumultuous year Walter has had.
He’s founder and CEO of the $295 billion-dollar Guggenheim Partners financial firm, which recently agreed to sell its EFT business to Invesco Ltd. in a $1.2 billion deal.
He’s also chairman and primary owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers, which saw the World Series championship land in the glove of the Houston Astros after a heart-stopping seven games.
Talk about ups and downs.
Only the ghost of Christmas Future knows how the next Series will play out. Maybe that’s what keeps Walter coming back to the show.
Walter, who sits on Forbes’ list of billionaires, also likes that supporting the Goodman because it’s focused on the community.
“It’s terrific theater,” he wrote, but it also “provides opportunities for students who might not otherwise have exposure to theater a chance to learn and experience this transformative art form.”