Born in Champaign, Illinois, Mark graduated from Winnetka's New Trier High School and attended Blackburn College and the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México before earning a B.A (cum laude) in history from Cornell University. Senator Kirk also earned a Master's Degree from the London School of Economics and a law degree from Georgetown University. In 1989, Mark was commissioned as an officer in the navy reserve and currently holds the rank of Commander.
Senator Kirk's professional career began on the staff of Congressman John Porter followed by service in the World Bank and State Department. He practiced law at Baker & McKenzie before serving as a counsel to the House International Relations Committee. In 2000, Mark was elected to the House of Representatives where he served five terms before his election to the Senate.
Mark serves on four Senate committees: 1) Appropriations, 2) Banking, 3)HELP (Health, Education, Labor & Pensions), and 4) Aging. His home is in Highland Park, Illinois.