Homeland Security Chief of Staff Christian Marrone to Speak at Penn State

Penn State football alumnus and Chief of Staff of the Department of Homeland Security Christian Marrone will speak Wednesday at 12:20 p.m. in room 113 of the IST Building.

Marrone, who holds a degree in Political Science from Penn State, has held numerous posts within the government and in the private sector. Before jumping to the Department of Homeland Security, Marrone was the Vice President for National Security and Acquisition Policy at the Aerospace Industries Association. With the Department of Defense, Marrone served as the Special Assistant to Secretary Robert Gates, and was the Acting Assistant Secretary of Defense for Legislative Affairs. He was one of only four staffers to stick with Gates into the Obama administration. Before that, he was an executive with Defense Markets for a company called 3M in Washington.

Marrone played for the Penn State football team under Joe Paterno from 1993-1997. He was one of the speakers at the Bryce Jordan Center during “A Memorial for Joe.” Representing players from the 1990s, Marrone described how Paterno stuck with him, even though his multiple knee injuries cut his career short. Marrone recalled how Paterno told him to “continue to make an impact, continue to do the right thing, and you’ll do just fine.” He also attributed much of his success to Paterno with his own, including “rising through the ranks of the Department of Defense.”

Here is the video of his speech, and the rest of the memorial:

Earlier this year, the Washington Times put Marrone in hot water when it reported that Marrone had admitted in court “to collecting salary while supervising the senator’s [Former State Senator Vincent Fumo] private home renovations, hiring a private eye to dig up dirt on a political rival and serving as president of a company that used nonprofit urban revitalization money for a for-profit venture.” (Update: Marrone emailed us to counter the claims made in the Times. He said they were a series of politically motivated hit pieces and that he did not have a private eye).

During his talk, Marrone will discuss “a risk-based approach to handling situations on the border, coast, and within the country utilizing given resources,” among other topics, according to the event page.

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Ben Berkman

State College, PA

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