Meet Your Community Liaisons
Communications represents a core function of any government, and here at City Planning, we are increasingly exploring new ways to broaden support for key programs, respond to communities’ needs, and demonstrate accountability in the workplace.
For City Planning, a strong communications network has led to greater trust at the community level and, with that trust, a higher level of engagement. Technology has helped us maximize our online presence and the reach of our communications, and establishing an active presence on social media and at in-person meetings furthers outreach and engagement across Los Angeles’s communities!
Hiring Community Liaisons has, however, played a significant role in bolstering clear lines of communications between planners and the communities we serve. In fact, City Planning’s Community Liaison program has become a model of outreach and engagement.
City Planning conducts extensive outreach across all of Los Angeles’s 469 square miles. This outreach can consume a significant part of a planner’s day, taking time away from reviewing projects or developing land use regulations. To balance the demands of outreach and the work at hand, City Planning has created dedicated positions to focus entirely on community outreach, engagement, and education—an inclusive model that values two-way communication.
This month, City Planning onboarded two new Community Liaisons. Join us in welcoming Fipe Leilua and Jaime Espinoza! They are your primary points of contact for general planning and land use questions. They bring with them a wealth of knowledge, having worked on various projects and in different divisions of City Planning.
Fipe is the Community Liaison assigned to the West, South, and Harbor geographies, which includes the Westside neighborhoods, South Los Angeles, and Harbor Gateway. Jaime is the Community Liaison for the Central and East geographies, which encompass the area stretching from Mid-City, the Hollywood Hills, and Westlake/Pico-Union to Downtown, Boyle Heights, and the Northeast neighborhoods. Both Fipe and Jaime also currently share responsibility for representing the San Fernando Valley area, until a new staffer is brought onboard to support the Valley.
Before joining City Planning’s External Affairs Division, Fipe worked as a Planning Assistant at the Metro Public Counter and then as part of the Major Project Case Condition Clearance Unit. It has been her favorite assignment so far—working directly with the general public. She also worked at the Department of Neighborhood Empowerment as she was completing her graduate studies.
Jaime worked as a Planning Assistant in the Code Studies Division developing land use and landscaping standards for the new Zoning Code. He conducted research, outreach, and environmental analysis on proposed code amendments. In addition to this role, Jaime designed and translated into Spanish a variety of community outreach and information collateral, including videos, website content, brochures, and posters, and he provided live Spanish translations at public meetings and events.
Both Jaime and Fipe are from Southern California. Fipe was born and raised in the South Bay area of Los Angeles County and currently lives in Carson, California. Jaime has lived in various parts of the region, from the San Gabriel Valley to the Inland Empire, but he currently resides in Koreatown.
As your primary point of contact, Community Liaisons constantly interact with the different communities they serve. Fipe and Jaime are well equipped for the task of relating to and effectively communicating with all of LA’s different neighborhoods. A major component of their work this year will include strengthening and customizing outreach methods to reach underserved and marginalized constituents, in conjunction with the Office of Civic Engagement at EmpowerLA.
For more information, please contact your Community Liaisons: