John Fetterman was attracted to Braddock, PA by the town's tragic arc of history and malignant beauty.
Founded around the site of Andrew Carnegie's first steel mill, Braddock's fortunes declined in lockstep with the American steel industry. As the town's population fell from a peak of more than 20,000 to just 2,300, its buildings, infrastructure and economy unraveled. With 90% of everything lost -population, buildings, homes, businesses- the challenges seemed insurmountable.
John Fetterman, a Harvard graduate with a Master's Degree in Public Policy, moved to Braddock in 2001 to work with AmeriCorps. Four years later he became the town's mayor - winning the election by a single vote - and has been at the forefront of a massive effort to revitalize the once prosperous town ever since.
In 2009, Fetterman won a second term by nearly a 3-1 margin. As of this writing, Braddock is in its 40th consecutive month without a homicide. A relentless advocate for reimagining and redesigning Braddock, Mayor Fetterman's focus on creating safer a safer, most just Braddock, youth-oriented programs, attracting artists and other 'creatives' to his community and to pursuing green urban renewal and economic development have been recognized in The New York Times, The Atlantic and The Guardian, and on CNBC, CNN, CBS News, The Colbert Report and Real Time with Bill Maher.