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|Full Biography for Mark S. Critz|
Mark Critz knows western Pennsylvania. Mark spent more than a decade working on behalf of western Pennsylvanians as a congressional staffer for Congressman John P. Murtha, first as his Director of Economic Development and then as District Director. After Congressman Murtha's death, Mark decided to run for his seat and was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in May 2010 to fulfill the rest of Congressman Murtha's term. Mark was re-elected in November 2010 to serve a full two-year term.
What Mark took away from his time with Mr. Murtha is that being a good congressman means being a good public servant and that no selfish or party interests should supersede the needs of the people whom you represent. "Nobody in this race cares about this district, its people and their needs like I do," said Critz. "Being a good representative is exactly that + representing the needs and expectations of the people who live in this great district. I know, firsthand, the challenges and opportunities that we face in western Pennsylvania."
During his first campaign, Mark promised to work together with both Democrats and Republicans to do what's in the best interest of the American people + and he has a reputation in Congress for working across the aisle on military, veterans, small business, energy and transportation issues.
A member of the House Armed Services Committee, Mark is fighting to ensure that our military is fully prepared to meet worldwide threats and challenges. Having traveled the country, and globe, meeting with our men and women in uniform, he has fought to ensure that our troops are taken care of both on the battlefield and when they return home.
Mark was recognized for his excellent service to our nation's military when he was awarded the Patrick Henry Award by the National Guard Association of the United States (NGAUS) in 2008. The Patrick Henry Award is designed to provide recognition to local officials and civic leaders, who in a position of great responsibility distinguished themselves with outstanding and exceptional service to the Armed Forces of the United States, the National Guard or NGAUS. It is the highest civilian award issued by the National Guard.
Mark also sits on the House Small Business Committee and is currently the lead Democrat on its Agriculture, Energy and Trade Subcommittee - fighting to ensure that the ideas and concerns of our local small businesses are heard in Washington, D.C. Understanding the enormous economic potential that the Marcellus Shale gas industry can have on the future of western Pennsylvania and our nation, Mark co-founded the House Marcellus Shale Caucus. He also introduced legislation in 2011 to authorize grants to strengthen the on-the-job training programs for workers in the natural gas industry to help ensure that jobs go to Pennsylvanians and not workers from out-of-state.
An active member of the Congressional Task Force on Seniors, Mark has sponsored legislation to protect and strengthen Social Security and Medicare. Mark received the Social Security and Medicare Hero Award from the Pennsylvania Alliance for Retired Americans in September 2011 for his tireless work on behalf of seniors.
Concerned about the affects of unfair and free trade on our local economy, Mark has been a leading voice in Congress on fair trade issues. He's an original co-sponsor of the Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act, legislation that will hold countries, like China, accountable for unfairly manipulating their currency. In July 2011, Mark filed a discharge petition on the legislation, which would force an immediate House vote if 218 signatures are gathered, and has been leading Democratic efforts to pass this critical legislation, estimated to create millions of new jobs and reduce the budget deficit by $71 billion per year. Mark is also an active member of the Democrats' Make It In America Task Force, which seeks to help businesses make products here in the U.S.
"Everywhere I go in the 12th Congressional District people have talked to me about economic development issues," added Critz. "I have been fighting this fight for longer than a decade, and we have already seen some great results. My experience has provided me with the knowledge to hit the ground running and keep important economic development initiatives moving forward."
Mark and his wife, Nancy, a speech pathologist in the Greater Johnstown School District, live in Johnstown with their twin children.
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Created from information supplied by the candidate: March 22, 2012 17:13
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