Marc Friedenberg is a native of Northeast Philly, the oldest son of Charles and Lori. He first moved to State College fifteen years ago to enroll at Penn State’s College of Information Sciences and Technology, where he graduated with a Master’s Degree in 2006. Marc has always had a passion for figuring out how technology could be used to improve people’s lives. His Master’s thesis was focused on helping emergency responders locate each other in the field, back before smartphones and Google Maps were popular.
Next, Marc graduated from Columbia Law School, pursuing his interest in cyber law and Internet privacy. After graduating in 2009, in the midst of the Great Recession, he worked for two law firms and pursued cases against the Wall Street banks that caused it, using his skill with computer technology to sift through the data and prove that fraud had occurred. While suing the big banks, Marc saw firsthand the greed, corruption, and carelessness that has taken over our economy and our government, and has never forgotten those experiences while talking to working people out on the campaign trail.
In 2012, Marc was recruited for a teaching position at his alma mater, Penn State’s College of Information Sciences and Technology, and returned to State College, excited by the opportunity to give back to the community as an educator. Today, he serves on the Faculty Senate and teaches classes related to cyber law and the global economy.
Marc never thought he would go into politics, but after Congress tried to kick millions of Americans off of their health insurance to give a massive tax break to the ultra-wealthy, Marc felt called to act. He first started a group called PA5 Truth and Action, dedicated to organizing local activists and concerned citizens and mobilizing them against the effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act. The repeal effort was successfully beaten back, but it became clear that Congressional Republicans—the recipients of millions of dollars in donations from the health insurance industry, Big Pharma, and Wall Street banks—had decided to stop listening to their own constituents altogether. Marc decided to step up and run to give the people of Pennsylvania a chance to vote for a representative who would work for them, rather than for big corporations and ultra-wealthy donors.
Marc declared his candidacy in September of 2017 and kicked off his campaign by announcing plans for a Listening Tour that visited every county in his district, where citizens of any political affiliation can come and voice their concerns. He is incredibly grateful for the insights, feedback, support, and encouragement he has received from people across the district.
After the Pennsylvania Supreme Court redrew the state’s Congressional District lines in February 2018, Marc’s home in Centre County was included in the new 12th Congressional District. Even though he was looking forward to winning the fight against Glenn Thompson, Marc quickly announced his plans to seek the Democratic nomination in this new district to take on a new incumbent, Tom Marino. As Marc said: “I first decided to run for Congress because my family, my friends, and my neighbors deserve better representation in government, and I felt called to act. That hasn’t changed just because the map has.”
Marc is the proud husband of his incredible and supportive wife (and high school sweetheart) Becky, and the loving father of his two wonderful young daughters, Claire and Molly.