Skip to content

Conversations with the Council featuring Mark Elhilow, Principal at Blue Ocean Capital

Conversations with the Council featuring Mark Elhilow, Principal at Blue Ocean Capital

Conversations with the Council featuring Mark Elhilow, Principal at Blue Ocean Capital

Nothing worthwhile comes easy. Absolutely nothing.” Dedication is one of the many words you could use to describe Mark Elhilow, the Managing Principal at Blue Ocean Capital. “I function as a protector of sorts, fighting hard for what is best for our clients and employees, above all else. Working to ensure we have a culture of giving here at the firm, whereby we all endeavor to create more value with each action than we might otherwise expect to receive in return for our efforts.”  

This valuable life lesson was one Mark learned early on in life by watching his father, Vince, and his interactions. “His unwavering commitment to treating everyone with an abundance of kindness, equality, and fairness, while always maintaining the ability to be firm and make tough decisions, is in no small part the secret to his success both personally and professionally. His natural ability to apply simple logic, regardless of the complexity of the situation, has been a very useful tool in practice, without the inherent conflicts in judgment, to follow your instincts as a means to always do the right thing, no matter how difficult.”

West Palm Beach is home to Mark and has been for his family for over 100 years. Born at Good Samaritan Hospital, Mark attended public school in the county and then graduated from Florida State University. “I began my career in public accounting, which evolved into wealth management and a family office practice over a period of thirty years.” Throughout this time, he’s learned the value of surrounding himself with the right people. “It’s all about the relationships you forge. How those people around you contribute to making you better, more informed, and self-aware of who you are and where you need to work harder to improve yourself.” Looking back, he’d tell his younger self to focus on what works and why instead of spending too much time on what doesn’t or what isn’t. “Success is more about not squandering opportunities than anything. Learn to identify opportunities and explore accordingly as often as possible. Recognize that every decision you make in business and life has consequences, some of which are incidental and others having more gravity. The latter can often be much more difficult to unwind in the future vs. having made a more thoughtful and informed decision from inception.”

One decision that was easy for Mark to make was joining The Economic Council of Palm Beach County. “Serving on the Economic Council has been a positive learning experience for me both personally and professionally. It has benefited Blue Ocean primarily through the personal growth I have enjoyed as a result of serving with a group of like-minded business leaders across a myriad of industries, many of whom share a heartfelt desire to improve the quality of life throughout Palm Beach County. Advocating for business and sound public policies on a countywide basis serves Blue Ocean both directly and indirectly by advancing public policies which directly affect our employees and their families.” He says some of these policy issues include “Housing, workforce development, mobility, and transportation, as well as public education.”

Mark is confident the county can maintain a strong economy while addressing those challenges. “Palm Beach County is blessed with a positive demographic trend, which has been well intact for many years, most recently exaggerated by the COVID migration. Capitalizing on this demographic cycle presents a huge opportunity for policymakers to advance many thoughtful public initiatives which may have otherwise been difficult to underwrite during previous economic cycles. Supporting public policies which will yield dividends to future generations is the real opportunity, as opposed to allowing the government to squander any economic windfalls bestowed upon our community coffers.”

However, he is optimistic the business climate will only improve in the next ten years. “Working collectively with others to continue advancing the impact and leverage the business community has on advancing sound public policies and building a constituency of support for policies which will benefit everyone, regardless of their socioeconomic background. To this end, the business community’s ability to coalesce around political outcomes in advancement of sound public policies will be paramount to this process. It takes a village, so to speak.”

And it’s his “village” that has helped him get to where he is today. “I have been very fortunate to be surrounded by many mentors during my lifetime, starting with my parents and wife, Susan, and followed by a myriad of clients and professional relationships. All have supported my development personally and professionally. Almost entirely, each of these special people has advocated simple, understandable, fundamentally sound, reliable counsel for how to handle difficult situations and embrace opportunities. I am profoundly grateful for these relationships in my life, past and present, and I seek out folks who can challenge me to be a better person in every respect. This is the best way for me to pass along any good fortune and knowledge I am lucky enough to possess as a result of these relationships.”

Powered By GrowthZone