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Best Local Politician 

Kacie Starr Triplett

The youngest member of the St. Louis Board of Aldermen, Kacie Triplett serves some of the city's most activist neighborhoods with a savvy that she must have learned from her late grandfather, former state senator John Bass. A little over a year into her job representing the Sixth Ward, the 27-year-old Triplett says she's still optimistic that downtown loft-dwellers and the homeless people who hang out in Lucas Park can learn to peacefully coexist. Triplett was raised in and still lives in Tower Grove East, a hot spot for rehabbers that's also seeing its share of crime. This fall she'll try to usher through a bill that would make the city keep better track of vacant buildings and crack down on owners who let them become havens for vagrants. Wisely, she didn't hesitate to post the first draft of the bill to the St. Louis Rehabbers Club (www.rehabbersclub.org) listserv, the top forum for opinionated urbanists and a key component of her constituency. Triplett remains enthusiastic about public service, and she takes the headaches of democratic process in stride. Maybe her energy will rub off on the rest of the Board of Aldermen by the time this rising star sets her sights on a bigger office.

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