USC Price School of Public Policy

Compton Mayor Aja Brown ’04, MPL ’05 receives JFK New Frontier Award

January 17, 2017

Aja Brown ’04, MPL ’05 (Photo by Tom Queally)

Compton Mayor and USC Price School of Public Policy alumna Aja Brown ’04, MPL ’05 has been named a recipient of the prestigious 2016 John F. Kennedy New Frontier Award.

The New Frontier Awards were created by the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation and the Institute of Politics at Harvard University to honor Americans under the age of 40 who are changing their communities and the country with their commitment to public service. The awards are presented annually to two exceptional individuals whose contributions as full-time public servants in elective office, community service, or advocacy demonstrate the impact and the value of public service in the spirit of John F. Kennedy.

At the age of 31, Brown became the youngest mayor in the history of Compton, Calif. Elected in 2013, Brown previously served more than a decade as an urban planner in cities across Southern California. She was elected to office on her 12-point plan, “Vision For Compton,” that focused on gang violence and bringing new jobs into the city. Brown mediated talks between gang organizations to significantly reduce violence and crime. After doing so, she secured federal support for Compton through a new U.S. Department of Justice violence prevention program, the Violence Reduction Network.

Brown was presented with the award during a ceremony at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in December.

Read more about the John F. Kennedy New Frontier Awards »