Steve Hansen is a community advocate, former Sacramento City Councilmember and father, who has dedicated his life to service. Growing up in a working-class neighborhood in St. Paul, Minnesota, Steve’s family struggled. After his parents divorced, Steve and his mom moved around a lot, even spending a period of time in a domestic violence shelter. After high school, Steve joined the Army National Guard, with hopes to serve his country in the military. But when he realized he was gay, 'Don't Ask Don't Tell' changed Steve’s dreams.
After college, Steve moved to Sacramento to start a new life. His life of public service began as an Executive Fellow working in the California State and Consumer Services Agency. He went on to serve as Legislative Director for Equality California, the nation’s largest statewide LGBTQ+ civil rights organization, where he advocated for marriage equality and civil rights protections.
Steve was first elected to the Sacramento City Council in 2012, representing the residents in the River Oaks, Central City, Land Park, South Land Park, and Little Pocket neighborhoods — and making history as the city's first openly gay Councilmember. During his time on the Council, Steve was a leading voice for smart growth, multi-modal transportation, safer communities, climate action, economic development, and innovation in government service. He helped Sacramento recover from the Great Recession, create good-paying union jobs, invest in new arts and educational facilities, increase protections for LGBTQ+ employees and residents, ban flavored vaping products, make our streets and communities safer, enact protections for tenants against excessive rent increases and unfair evictions, combat homelessness, and build more affordable housing.
Throughout his tenure, Steve served on the board of and as chair for the Sacramento Regional Transit District, the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District, and the Sacramento Transportation Authority. He also served on the boards of the Downtown Sacramento Partnership, the Midtown Association, the Broadway Partnership, the Sacramento History Alliance, the Sacramento Cable Commission, the Regional Sanitation District, Paratransit, Inc., and as chair of the Local Government Commission.
Steve is a graduate of University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law and has a bachelor’s degree in International Relations from Gonzaga University. In 2014, he earned a Certificate for Senior Executives in State and Local Government from Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government. Steve and his partner, Michael, have two young sons, ages 3 and 5, and two dogs.