When he was just a kid at Westlane Middle School, Marc Berkowitz wanted to be a game show host. He knew his life was going to be in entertainment. He learned magic to get on stage, auditioned for plays, joined the Music Men at North Central and crafted his talents as the writer of a winning Junior Spectacular act and directed the senior musical of “Camelot.” He ventured west to Hollywood, taking any job he could behind the scenes to get connected to the industry he dreamed of starring in. His big break would come thanks to the slime, physical challenge and phenomenon of Double Dare, the legendary family-oriented game show that helped launch the success of Nickelodeon. Now Marc Summers, he lived his dream and became a star.
Other hosting duties would follow, including multiple successful shows on the Food Network, including Unwrapped, which aired for a decade. He became a producer as well as a host on a number of projects, but it was his tackling of an issue off camera that would be as much a part of his legacy as the work on it. In the late 1990’s, in the midst of his success, he revealed that he has obsessive compulsive disorder. Summers, himself, wasn’t truly aware of his own disease until connecting the dots, and managed to get through working on a show that contained every mess imaginable. His declaration led to him becoming a leading advocate for those suffering from anxiety and behavioral disorders.
Summers’ career came full circle in spring of 2016, when he returned to his Hoosier roots to host a one-man show in Bloomington, called “Everything in its Place: The Life and Slimes of Marc Summers.” Through all of the ups and downs of his Hollywood career, Summers still has roots in Washington Township, thanks largely to the relationships with his teachers.
“The entire North Central campus looks the same today as it did when I was a student,” he said. “Teachers really care about the students. I never heard about what I couldn’t do, I only heard about what I could do. That’s the memory I have of Washington Township.”