Lan Nguyễn is the Public Health Advocacy Project Manager supporting the San Diego Childhood Obesity Initiative. Her role includes centering community voices in collective action through research and advocacy with diverse communities to enhance community well-being.

Lan has over 20 years of experience working in grassroots organizations, the public and private sectors, and the academy across the globe. She specializes in research, policy advocacy, and program development focused on social and spatial justice at the intersection of climate change, disaster management, and public health. Early in her career she honed her community engagement skills to collaborate with neighborhood residents and non-profits to develop community gardens, neighborhood parks, improve pedestrian safety in transportation corridors, enhance affordable housing conditions, and promote anti-poverty campaigns. Her work gained local and state recognition for outstanding community development planning leadership. She blended her community development expertise with emergency management to elevate community knowledge and assets for disaster management and climate justice in local, state, and federal planning, training, and exercise programs. She helped lead a coalition of 16 BIPOC-led health boards to advocate for health equity, build organizational capacity, and respond to COVID-19 in Washington State.

Lan earned her doctorate at the University of Washington in Interdisciplinary Urban Design and Planning, master’s degree in the same area of study at the University of California, Irvine, and bachelor’s degree at the University of California, Riverside in Liberal Studies. During her academic career at the University of Washington she has earned two teaching excellence awards and several distinguished student awards including the Husky 100 for innovative and novel solutions thinking when applying knowledge to practice.

Lan joined the Center for Community Health in 2023.


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