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Campbell, Calif. // 26

Though he may be the youngest mayor in the nation, Evan Low’s new job is just an extension of the community service that was part of his upbringing. After graduating from San Jose State University with a degree in political science and the executive program at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government (he’s now a grad student in public administration), Low immersed himself in local politics in the city he calls home and where his father has owned a business for many years. Elected to the city council in 2006, Low is tasked with addressing many of the same budget woes affecting municipalities everywhere: reducing spending while maintaining services. The Silicon Valley city of 38,000 residents has a small, quiet gay community, and Low received hate mail as a result of announcing his opposition to California Proposition’s 8. Nevertheless, he believes his sexual orientation is of little concern to voters. Despite the visible gay community in nearby San Francisco, Low prefers to stay in Campbell. “For me, it’s about making a difference in the community I live in,” he says. 

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