Aja Brown

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Aja L. Brown
Aja Brown 0021.jpg
Mayor of Compton, California
Assumed office
July 2, 2013
Preceded by Eric J. Perrodin
Personal details
Born Aja Lena Clinkscale
(1982-04-17) April 17, 1982 (age 33)[1]
Altadena, California[1]
Nationality American
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Van Brown (m.2003)
Residence Compton, California
Alma mater University of Southern California[2]
Occupation Community Development Professional[2]
Website www.comptoncity.org

Aja Lena Brown (born April 17, 1982)[1] is an American politician who currently serves as Mayor of Compton, California. On June 4, 2013, Aja Brown made history as Compton's youngest mayor ever to be elected. She won the election by a landslide, defeating both incumbent mayor Eric J. Perrodin and former mayor Omar Bradley.[2][3]


While attending University of Southern California, she began working for the City of Gardena, California in 2004 as an Economic Development Analyst. She graduated in 2004 with a bachelor's degree in public policy, urban planning and development. A year later in 2005, she earned a master's degree in urban planning with a concentration in economic development.[2]


In 2006, Brown began working for the City of Inglewood, California as an Urban Planner. She served a term as a Planning Commissioner for the City of Pasadena, then resigned in 2009 to join Compton's Redevelopment Agency as a Redevelopment Project Manager, focusing her efforts on revitalizing the emergent City of Compton. She was responsible for creating community benefits legislation, initiating community-led downtown revitalization action committees, overseeing the Agency’s urban planning and economic development initiatives. Brown also created and implemented Compton’s Apprentice Program designed to create jobs for local residents on city-funded or assisted capital improvement projects.

In 2011, Brown co-founded the Urban Vision Community Development Corporation, a non-profit organization in Compton dedicated to community economic and youth development. Brown has also developed several re-branding programs that have achieved success in various cities, and she was awarded the "Best 2012 Communicator Design Award" for her "Yes!" campaign for the City of Compton. She has been instrumental in marketing Compton's buyer's program for first-time home buyers, as well as programs to attract expertise in land use and transportation.[3][4]

2013 Mayoral Election[edit]

Having worked as a city employee for Compton, Brown decided in October 2012 to introduce what she called her "New Vision for Compton". A newcomer to politics, she defeated 12 candidates, including former mayor Omar Bradley and the incumbent mayor Eric J. Perrodin, to become the youngest mayor of Compton at age 31.[3][4]

12-Point Strategy Plan[edit]

Mayor Brown has launched a "12-Point Plan" designed to strategically advance the city of Compton. During Brown’s tenure as a city employee, she recognized that the essential components needed to foster a healthy, thriving city were either outdated or non-existent. Addressing existing problems on multiple fronts, including youth development, infrastructure, working with educational coalitions and economic development, she says she has made her "12-Point Plan" accessible for the residents to follow along with the progress of the city.[5]

Decrease in violence[edit]

In 2014, Brown began reaching out to Compton Bloods and Crips gang leaders through former members to negotiate peace. She uses conflict mitigation instead of heavy policing. Since the gangs started regular meetings, violent activity was reduced by about 65 percent.[6]

Personal life[edit]

Mayor Brown and husband, Van.

Aja Brown is married to Van Brown, a Petrochemical Safety Manager.[3]


  1. ^ a b c "Birth date". United States. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Aja L. Brown, Mayor". Compton, California: The City of Compton, California. 2005. Retrieved 2010-11-25. 
  3. ^ a b c d Irina Aleksander (23 January 2015). "The Unsinkable Aja Brown". Elle. Retrieved 17 August 2015. 
  4. ^ a b Mayor Aja Brown delivers ‘State of the City’ address, Friday; Compton Herald; July 5, 2015
  5. ^ Aja Brown: A History-Making Mayor in Compton; BET; March 18, 2014
  6. ^ Nick Allen (26 December 2014). "Straight into Compton: house prices soar as murderous gangs reach truce". Compton: The Telegraph. Retrieved 17 August 2015. 
Political offices
Preceded by
Eric J. Perrodin
Mayor of Compton, California
Succeeded by