Brower Youth Awards

Peter Pham

San Jose, CA

Advocating for Transit Justice

Peter Pham, 22, organizes for environmental and transit justice with Turnout4Transit, a coalition of environmental advocacy groups, labor unions, and social justice organizations.

When Pham first started taking courses at community college, he commuted by bus two hours each way. Since then, he has been fighting for better public transit throughout the San Jose metropolitan region with the goals of slashing regional emissions, decreasing traffic congestion, and local residents’ increasing access to opportunities.

During the past year, Pham and his colleagues helped pass a three-county ballot measure to generate $100 million for rail services in San Francisco, San Mateo, and Santa Clara counties. Despite major decreases in revenue during the pandemic, they also successfully pushed for the Santa Clara transit agency to limit the number of cuts made to bus services so that underserved community members had adequate access to public transit.