Mayor, Charlotte, NC
At 38, Anthony Foxx is “an up-and-coming person in politics,” Wenger says. After a successful legal career, a stint as a city councilman, and election as Charlotte’s 54th mayor in 2009, Foxx landed a major political coup last year when Charlotte was selected to host the 2012 Democratic National Convention. When North Carolina Gov. Bev Perdue announced in January she would not seek reelection, Foxx’s name popped up on the shortlist of candidates to seek the Democratic nomination.
Foxx decided to sit out the gubernatorial race this time around, but he has plenty of time to make his move to higher office. After all, the DNC’s 2004 keynote speaker was a young and virtually unknown state senator from Illinois.