Who is "Marty" Mark Rathbun?

The Man, The Myth, The LegendIntroduction

Perhaps it's only fitting that Mark "Marty" Rathbun goes by two different names. During the years for which I was able to plot his career within the CoS, he seems to have worn enough hats for at least two people.

What follows is very much a working draft of Rathbun's career, from his first appearance in the power structure of Authors Service Inc., through his meteoric rise through the ranks of the Religious Technology Center (RTC). It also details his subsequent fall from grace immediately following the announcement of the once-secret CoS/IRS agreement in October, 1993 -- as well as his apparent return to the fold several years later. 

There are some significant gaps.

It would seem that Mr. Rathbun -- he uses both names, Marty and Mark, interchangeably -- has been in the thick of virtually every major CoS happening in the last decade, from Wollersheims I and II  (including -- yes -- Judge Swearinger and Duke), the rebirth of the Guardian's Office, the launch of OSA, the years of frantic negotiations with the IRS and much more.

One of the pack of  David  Miscavige cronies who came to the forefront of CoS management during the putsch of 1981, he does not appear in such notorious reports as the transcript from the infamous Mission Holders Conference.  Mr. Rathbun appears to be a backroom boy, more fond of shadows than of the public light. Even ex-scientologists who spent years inside seem to know little about him, despite the fact that he was seemingly in the background for nearly every major event of the decade.

In 1993, Rathbun seemed to be at the peak of his CoS career. President and Inspector General for Ethics at RTC, the most senior CoS organisation, he answered to none but RTC Board Chairman David Miscavige. As Inspector General (Ethics), he held one of the three most senior positions in RTC, save that of Miscavige, and was personally responsible for overseeing some of the more sinister management functions of the CoS; Ethics and Justice.

At least, until 1994.

Something seems to have happened between 1993 and 1994, something that made it necessary for Warren McShane to take over as president of RTC.

Towards the end of 1994, Mark "Marty" Rathbun was made a director of the corporation. He is also no longer referred to as IG Ethics for RTC. It is not clear whether the position was abolished, or the power transferred to McShane as president.

There is a suggestion that Rathbun spent the first part of 1994 on the Freewinds, either in RPF or being "handled" after an attempt to leave the CoS towards the end of 1993. Another affidavit suggests that, rather than being punished,  he was moved out of the United States at the behest of RTC Chairman David Miscavige, possibly to avoid deposition in one of the then-ongoing court cases.

It was during these lost years that Rathbun made one of his more bizarre cameo appearances, as the object of a court case brought against Church of Scientology International (CSI) by former German GO official Barbara Schwarz. Schwarz claimed that he was her husband, and sued the CoS for failing to provide her with information on his then-current location. It is unclear whether she was, in fact, his wife. However, the otherwise inexplicable incident does lend weight to the theory that, for whatever reason, the CoS was not anxious to reveal Rathbun's status within the organisation, even to his purported nearest and dearest.

After this fall from grace, Rathbun seems to disappear into the woodwork until the last days of December, 1997, when the IRS agreement he had helped to strike was leaked to the Wall Street Journal. When asked to comment on the deal, Rathbun made this -- perhaps accidentally ironic -- observation,

"When you're pure as the driven snow, you don't worry about that kind of thing."

In the interests, then, of driven snow purity and sunshine disinfectant, I present The Life and Times of Marty Mark Rathbun, international man of mystery. I have gathered the information that follows from a wealth of online resources. Wherever possible, I have added links to the source documents, as well as quoted the relevant passages, to give some context. Any errors, either in transcription or interpretation, are mine alone.

Please - fill in the blanks, if you have anything to add


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