Katie Judd: Empowering residents to be agents of change

Katie Judd


From a young age, Katie Judd lived an active lifestyle. She was born and raised in Bonita, and recalls walking to school and horseback riding as a child. She attended college at Portland State on a volleyball scholarship, but didn't see herself being an athlete for life. She pictured herself completing a degree in health sciences and working at a nonprofit, but those plans unexpectedly changed.

What happened that turned her on to public health? Katie completed an internship with the County of San Diego's Aging and Independence Services (AIS), and was introduced to the field of public health. As a result, Katie transferred to Chico State where she finished her degree, but she didn't want to stop there. She attended graduate school at National University where she focused her studies on public administration. She was intrigued by her classes on the topics of built environment, planning, and land use.

How did she transition from AIS to working with children? Katie began working in the field at AIS San Diego County and then transitioned to become a Community Health Promotion Specialist in the East Region. She co-chaired the Coalition on Children & Weight San Diego (CCWSD) and became involved as the COI's Community Domain co-chair after the merger. Katie was fascinated by the seven domains, and continues her involvement because she recognizes that the COI is a growing force in the San Diego community.

Her favorite COI domain project is the policy, systems, environmental change (PSE)/community engagement mapping project, which will help streamline efforts around community advocacy and garner more interest in these projects. The maps help identify activities happening at the neighborhood level in which community members are actively engaged to create healthier community environments.

Katie is currently the Health Promotion Specialist for the County of San Diego's Health and Human Services Agency in East Region and says the best part of her job is empowering community residents to be their own advocates and supporting the change they want to see in the neighborhoods.

When Katie isn't working with residents to improve their neighborhoods, she enjoys hiking, and frequents Torrey Pines on the weekend, because "there's nothing like being able to see the ocean and mountains with snow topped peaks from one lookout point." When she's not out at beach or spending time with her family in San Diego County, she enjoys antique shopping, garage sales, and home decorating.

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