MEET THE HOST
David grew up hunting and fishing in South Alabama. In 1973, he earned a master's degree in biology from Auburn University, where he worked summers and holidays as a professional bass guide on nearby Lake Eufaula. After graduation, David founded and managed Georgia's Burnt Pine Plantation, a 14,000-acre commercial whitetail hunting operation. During his 20 years there, he developed one of the most intensive quality buck management programs in the South, allowing his clients to harvest nearly 2,000 bucks.
In 1976, David and two partners founded Game & Fish Publications and ultimately grew the company to include 33 state and regional hunting and fishing magazines covering all Lower 48 States. In 1982, David added North American Whitetail magazine, which quickly became the nation's premier deer magazine. David served as editor and executive publisher of the magazine qroup until stepping away from day-to-day duties in late 1990 to write, publish books, and lecture on whitetail hunting and management.
David has written three whitetail books. His first, Hunting Trophy Whitetails, is widely acclaimed as the most complete book ever written on the subject. His second book, a sequel to his first, Advanced Strategies For Trophy Whitetails, is one of the all-time best-selling hunting books. In addition to his many articles published in North American Whitetail and Game & Fish magazines, David's articles appeared in Outdoor Life, Sports Afield, Field & Stream, and several other national magazines. He also published four other best-selling whitetail books.
From the mid-1980s through 2000, David worked with magazine partner Steve Vaughn and biologist Dr. James Kroll of Stephen F. Austin State University on North American Whitetail Magazine’s 2000-acre whitetail research facility in Georgia to develop cutting-edge management techniques to grow big whitetails on small tracts. This 12-year research project eventually resulted in a revolutionary new deer management strategy using intensive year-round food plots to provide the mainstay of the deer’s diet, thereby exchanging seasonal and often low-nutrition native browse for year-round high-nutrition food plot forage. This strategy ultimately changed the face of deer hunting and management and has been a key driver in the increase in recreational land values.
In 1992, David bought a ranch in western Montana and applied the intensive food plot system to grow and attract trophy whitetails and other big game animals. In 1998, he purchased 3,000-acre El Cazador Ranch in South Texas. With food plots at the core of his management program, David increased the number of deer on Cazador by threefold while increasing the average weight of mature bucks by 40 pounds and the average antler size by 30 Boone & Crockett points, making Cazador one on the top trophy whitetail ranches in the country and the subject of many magazine articles, TV shows, and research projects.
In 2000, David and food plot pioneer Dr. Gary Schwarz started Tecomate Seed, a company forced into business by the big bucks they were growing. Today, the company is a leading supplier of wildlife seed.
In 2007, Tecomate started its own hunting show, Q3-4 The Bucks of Tecomate, hosted by David and comedian Jeff Foxworthy. The show continues to be one of the top-rated series in the industry.
In 2010, Tecomate launched its 2nd TV show, Q1-2 Tecomate Whitetail Nation, with emphasis on whitetail biology, management, and the growing year-round whitetail lifestyle.
Recently, David founded Tecomate Properties and shifted his full attention to helping landowners and managers grow more and bigger deer to increase their property’s recreational enjoyment and value. Since nothing beats “show-and-tell,” Tecomate Properties buys select properties and manages them under the “Tecomate Management System,” showcasing the development strategy and process on Tecomate Whitetail Nation and The Bucks of Tecomate TV shows. Tecomate Properties also helps qualifying landowners develop, manage, and market their properties, often featuring them on TV.
As much as David loves the outdoors and helping others get the most from their property and time afield, the most important things in his life are his faith in Jesus Christ, his wife, Debbie, and their 3 daughters and 8 grandkids, and his close friends gained over the years.
Mark is a skilled land manager and wildlife biologist from Northeast Mississippi. He is Tecomate’s Wildlife Biologist, Tecomate Seed’s General Manager, Tecomate Properties’ Project Manager, and cohost of Tecomate TV’s Bucks of Tecomate and Tecomate Whitetail Nation. Mark also is the founder/president of Newell Wildlife Services, which does wildlife consulting primarily across the Southeast. He is also currently the Associate Pastor of Algoma Baptist Church near Pontotoc, MS.
Mark foraged his skills as a land manager by obtaining a Wildlife Science Degree from Mississippi State University in 2004. Those skills were refined (during and after college) while working at Tara Wildlife Management (a bow hunting only outfitter near Vicksburg, MS), Timbercraft (a forestry consulting and implementation company near DeKalb, MS), and Bayou Pierre Outfitters (a hunting outfitter near Jackson, MS).
In late summer of 2005 things took a different turn for Mark when the Lord called him into the ministry. He moved to Northeast Mississippi to serve as associate pastor at the church he is serving today. During this time, he worked part time as a gunsmith for Richey’s Gun Shop in Pontotoc, MS. Furthermore, since the move he has earned a Theology Degree from a local bible college in Northeast Mississippi. It was also around this time when Newell Wildlife Service’s was born as a means of extra part time work.
Newell Wildlife Services has now grown into a regional wide business striving to produce “Healthy Huntable Habitat” for its clients. Through NWS, Mark has put his fingerprint on many properties all over the Southeastern U.S. Mark’s relationship with Tecomate began at this level becoming a contract biologist/consultant and prostaff member. Now NWS is in its 16th year and Mark has worked for Tecomate Seed 10 years, Tecomate TV 5 years, and Tecomate Properties 3 years.
With all of this he still finds time to spend with his wife of 15 years, Emily, his two daughters, Anna Grace and Emma Kate, and his son, Joshua. Mark has a true love for hunting, management, and the outdoors and now gets to share this lifestyle with his family. It is this mix of hunter, manager, biologist, husband, father, and love for the Lord & His great creation that has made Mark the person that he is today.