3530 Wilshire Blvd, 8th Floor,
Los Angeles, CA
Division of Chronic Disease and Injury Prevention
LA County Department of Public Health
3530 Wilshire Blvd, 8th Floor,
Los Angeles, CA 90010
PLACE stands for Policies for Livable Active Communities and
The Policies for Livable Active Communities and
Environments (PLACE) Program was launched in
2006 as part of an effort to bring funding allocated for
chronic disease and injury prevention in greater
alignment with the death and disability caused by
chronic disease and injury.
The PLACE Program fosters policy change that supports
healthy, safe, and active environments for all Los
Angeles County residents. We recognize that the design
and structure of our cities, communities, neighborhoods,
work sites, schools, and streets can impact how much
physical activity we get, what we eat, the safety of our
streets, and the quality of the air we breathe. How we
choose to design or improve various aspects of our
environment plays an important role in preventing injury
and many chronic conditions - such as obesity, heart
disease, diabetes and asthma - whose risk factors
include physical inactivity, poor nutrition and exposure
to air pollution. As more Angelinos face the threat and
reality of developing these chronic conditions, the
PLACE Program supports the development of healthier
communities by fostering policy change that improves the
places where people live, work and play.
Meet Our Team
Jean Armbruster, MA
Jean Armbruster, MA, is the
Director of the PLACE Program (Policies from Livable,
Active Communities and Environments) at the Los
Angeles County Department of Public Health. The
program’s mission is to foster policy change that
supports the development of safe, healthy, active
environments for all Los Angeles County residents.
PLACE makes grants and provides technical assistance to
cities and communities to promote the development of
policies such as bicycle and pedestrian master plans,
complete streets, and safe routes to schools plans. Ms.
Armbruster received her undergraduate degree from
Colorado College and her Master of Arts from California
State University, Long Beach. She loves hiking and
walking her dog in the Santa Monica Mountains.
Alexis Lantz, MA
Alexis Lantz, MA, is a mom and a Senior Policy Strategist with the PLACE Program at the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. In her role at PLACE she has assisted cities and the County with active transportation planning, policy development, and funding. She launched the development of the County’s first pedestrian plan: Step by Step LA County; Pedestrian Plans for Unincorporated Communities and helps facilitate the County of Los Angeles’ Vision Zero initiative. Previously, she was the Planning & Policy Director at the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition (LACBC). Alexis holds an M.A. in Urban Planning from UCLA. While at UCLA, she initiated a student-led course on bicycle and pedestrian planning that continues today and authored the report “Cycling in Los Angeles” as a Los Angeles Sustainability Collaborative fellow.
Justin Robertson, AICP is a Senior
Planner with the PLACE (Policies for Livable, Active
Communities and Environments) Program at the Los Angeles
County Department of Public Health (DPH), overseeing the
program’s pedestrian planning projects and facilitating
the County’s Healthy Design Workgroup and Tree
Committee. Justin received his Master of Urban and
Regional Planning degree from UCLA, and a Bachelor of
Arts in Political Science from California State
University, Northridge. Prior to joining PLACE, he
worked as a mobility planner and project manager for the
City of Glendale, as a community organizer in tobacco
policy at DPH, and as an aide to former Los Angeles City
Council Member Tom LaBonge. He is a member of the
American Institute of Certified Planners.
Mariana Huerta Jones
Senior Planning and Policy Manager
Mariana Huerta Jones, is the Senior Planning and Policy Manager with the PLACE Program. Prior to joining PLACE, she served as the Senior Coalition & Communications Manager with Alliance for Community Transit - Los Angeles (ACT-LA) where she led their equitable community planning program and built capacity for local groups to engage in city planning and advocacy processes, and also managed ACT-LA’s communications strategy. She has over 15 years’ experience as a community organizer, researcher, and policy advocate working on economic justice, transit equity and anti-displacement campaigns. She holds a Masters degree in Urban and Regional Planning from the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs, and a BA in Feminist Studies from Stanford University.
Zully Juárez, MA
Equity & Policy Manager
Zully Juárez is the Equity & Policy Manager with the PLACE Program. Working in partnership with community-based organizations, she outlines actions, policies, and programs that LA County will consider to enhance walkability across unincorporated communities. Zully has over 10 years of experience working on various planning issues, specifically as it pertains to environmental justice, health, housing and transportation equity. Prior to joining PLACE, she worked with East Yard Communities for Environmental Justice supporting the organization's strategic decisions and communications for their programs and campaigns. During her time at USC’s Environmental Health Centers, she led the engagement of science and policy related to environmental health hazards in Southern California. Through her work, Zully incorporates the intersection of urban planning and public health to advance people-powered planning and policy solutions to create equitable communities. Zully is a Robert & Patricia Switzer Fellow, she holds a Master of Urban & Regional Planning from UCLA and a B.A. in Gender & Women’s Studies and Ethnic Studies from UC Berkeley.