The Honorable John Fetterman, came to Braddock in the 90s as an Americorps volunteer after completing his Harvard education, and decided to stay. In 2001, Fetterman started a program helping youth attain GED certification and find employment. Then, in 2005, he ran for mayor and won. His leadership focuses on three things: improving the quality of life for young people in Braddock, attracting the kind of outside energy, ideas, and interest from the artistic, urbanist, and creative communities, and subverting the $2.5 billion Mon-Fayette Expressway designed to run straight through the middle of Braddock.
Fetterman’s efforts in his first term are paying dividends for the Braddock community. Creation of a large community center and a major piece of public art are in the works. A garden now sits on what was once one of the town’s most prominent overgrown lots. And an influx of activity and interest of all sorts from outsiders is generating a upswing in attention for this Southwestern PA municipality.