Thrilled by Twirls
As a partner at Sandler O'Neill, Mark H. Rosen knew investment banking. As a father, he knew baton twirling.
His daughter, Amanda, now 13, got the twirling bug early, becoming a member of the PAL Sparklers, a club in Brentwood, N.Y., near the family's home in West Islip. For a couple of years, no family vacation was complete without at least a few days spent in some out-of-the-way place at a competition. "He was quite happy to sit in hot gymnasiums in places like Grand Rapids or Dubuque and watch his daughter twirl," his wife, Patti, recalled.
Twirling also aided Mr. Rosen, 45, in fulfilling another familial obligation, playing Santa Claus at annual holiday school breakfasts. Mrs. Rosen isC atholic, and the children — Amanda, Matthew, 12, and Bryan, 16 — were raised in the church. Mr. Rosen was Jewish, but that did not matter. "We talked him into it," Mrs. Rosen said.
He borrowed the red suit from the Sparklers, who also recruited him to play Santa in some local twirling shows. He would be surrounded by jumping girls, with batons constantly whizzing past his nose, but he never flinched, having removed his glasses for that authentic Claus look. "He couldn't see a thing without them," Mrs. Rosen said.
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on December 22, 2001.