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C-3 San Diego is dedicated to preserving and improving our region's built and natural environments. Our objective is to influence critical policy, planning, and design through education, empowerment, and advocacy.

Each generation must rise to meet the challenges of the modern era. We believe that resolving racial inequality, expanding our public health infrastructure, and building climate change resilience is critical to ensuring the future of our city, our region, and our planet. How we develop our lands and structure our communities today will have lasting and potentially climacteric impacts. C-3 San Diego is pledging to meet these challenges through the following actions:

  • We must contend with the simultaneous crises of climate change, social inequality, racial injustice, and insufficient public health infrastructure. Addressing these complex and unprecedented challenges requires a collaborative, interdisciplinary, and visionary approach. Through our Knowledge Action Networks, we will seek individuals and organizations across disciplines, cultures, and perspectives to form coalitions and identify solutions.  
  • We must acknowledge the role of historic planning decisions in creating and perpetuating structures of racism and inequity. We will work to understand the roots of our bias and right the past wrongs that have harmed communities across our region.  
  • We aspire to achieve an integrated planning process, which is inclusive of all communities. Through education and sustained support, we will empower citizens to influence the trajectory of their communities with true agency and self-determination.

    Temporary Paradise? A Look at the Special Landscape of the San Diego Region, originally printed in 1974, resulted from a grant gifted to the City of San Diego by the Marston family, enlisting the expertise and creativity of two nationally noted planners, Kevin Lynch and Donald Appleyard. Together, Lynch and Appleyard provided a comprehensive, forward-looking, and beautifully illustrated blueprint, by which the San Diego-Tijuana region could grow and prosper while preserving and accentuating its unique and special characteristics.
    For over 40 years, Temporary Paradise? has provided guidance to C-3 San Diego in our advocacy and education efforts. In the years since its release, C-3 San Diego has generated two complementary documents to it: most recently, Sustainable Paradise, released on our 50th Anniversary. The message of Temporary Paradise? is just as relevant today as when it was written. 


    In its 60 years of existence, Creating Civic Community (C-3 San Diego) has worked with its all-volunteer Board of Directors and members to promote principles of good design and planning to achieve a healthy environment, strong economy, and social progress in the San Diego/Tijuana region. Founded by Esther Scott and visionary architect, Lloyd Ruocco in 1961, with the support of Hamilton Marston and Ellen Revelle, C-3 San Diego’s objectives were to conserve and promote "a handsome & functional community" through research, education, and coordinated citizen action. 

    C-3 San Diego's rich history of advocacy and civic participation in the San Diego region include advocating to stop the expansion of Highway 163, expanding public park space on the waterfront, and protecting County environmental lands from encroaching development. 

    C-3 San Diego's strategy for preserving its own legacy and ensuring its future is founded on its commitment to membership, partnership, and visibility. C-3 San Diego's members are among the most informed and influential citizens in the region, and this organization is committed to supporting and strengthening its membership by directly engaging members in its important work. C-3 San Diego also knows it can't do it alone and works closely in partnership with other organizations aligned with its mission.

    2024 Board of Directors


    Chair - Fundraising Committee

    Executive Vice President & CEO, AIA San Diego

    Leigh Eisen has served as the Executive Vice President and CEO of AIA San Diego since 2019 and as a Vice President on the AIA California Board of Directors since 2023. Leigh is skilled in nonprofit management, capacity building, program & event management, government relations, marketing & communications.

    As a 4th generation Californian and an alumna of Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture with a Masters in Urban Planning, Leigh brings passion for the San Diego region's built environs and two decades of non-profit  management and public sector experience to C-3 San Diego.



    Vice President; KAN Chair - Border

    Executive Director, WILDCOAST

    Serge Dedina is the Executive Director and co-founder of WILDCOAST, an international conservation team. He also served as the Mayor of Imperial Beach from 2014-2022, where he chaired the SANDAG Borders Committee for six years. Serge has been deeply involved in transboundary planning and conservation issues for the past 30 years, especially related to the cross-border sewage pollution crisis in San Diego-Tijuana.

    As a conservationist Serge has been very active in promoting binational ecosystem protection efforts in the coastal, marine and insular ecosystems along the U.S.-Mexico border. Serge received his B.A. in Political Science from UC San Diego and a Ph.D. in Geography from the University of Texas Austin. He is the author of three books on environmental issues in Baja California and the U.S.-Mexico border including Saving the Gray WhaleWild Sea and Surfing the Border. Serge grew up in Imperial Beach where he still resides. 



    Secretary; Chair - Membership Committee

    Designer, The Miller Hull Partnership

    Kaylee is a designer at The Miller Hull Partnership. At The Miller Hull Partnership, Kaylee is involved in projects addressing housing in the region as well as sustainability initiatives. She is a southern California native and relocated to San Diego in 2015 to pursue a degree in architecture with a minor in construction and urban design from the NewSchool of Architecture and Design.

    In addition to her involvement with C-3, she sits on the board for the Balboa Committee of 100 where she chairs the Archives committee,. Kaylee is also on the NewSchool Foundation serving as the President.

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    Treasurer; KAN Chair - Mesas, Canyons, Valleys

    President & CEO, San Diego River Park Foundation

    Rob Hutsel is the President and CEO of The San Diego River Park Foundation, a nonprofit established in 2001 to serve as a catalyst in creating a 52 mile long system of parks, trails and open spaces along the San Diego River. Since its founding, Rob has led an effort to build a coalition of 78 organizations partnering with the San Diego River Park Foundation and helped secure California legislation to create a new state agency dedicated to the San Diego River.

    He is skilled in nonprofit management, volunteer programs, coalition building, and government relations. Rob attended UC San Diego where he studied Urban Studies and Planning. He has been a guest lecturer at UCSD, SDSU and at several national and state conferences. Rob is committed to public service. In addition to his interest in serving on the C-3 Board of Directors, he is also currently on the board of directors of the California Watershed Network, Statewide Steering Committee of the California Urban Streams Partnership, and the County of San Diego’s Park Advisory Board, representing District 4.



    Director at Large

    Educator, UCSD

    Lawrence Herzog (Ph.D.) is a Design Scholar-in-Residence in the UCSD Design Lab and a Lecturer in the Department of Urban Studies &Planning. He is also a podcaster, writer and professor emeritus of city planning in the School of Public Affairs at SDSU, San Diego, California.

    Since 2022, Herzog’s UCSD-based Whose City? podcast brings in guests speaking about urban design, planning, and policy in the cross-border San Diego-Tijuana region. He is author or editor of 11 books on urban planning, design and global/cross-border development, including: Global Suburbs (Routledge) and From Aztec to High Tech (Johns Hopkins). Herzog has lectured at universities in Mexico, Peru, Brazil, France, Spain, Holland, Italy, Luxembourg, and the United Kingdom, and served as urban/regional planning consultant to U.S. and foreign clients. He has published many essays in the popular media including the Los Angeles Times, San FranciscoChronicle, San Diego Union-Tribune, and Voice of San Diego.


    Director; KAN Chair - Coastlines & Wetlands

    Senior Associate, Strategies 360 

    Ryan is a Senior Associate at Strategies 360, a full-service research, public affairs, and communications firm based in the Western United States. He previously worked as a research analyst for UNITE HERE! Local 30, San Diego's hotel workers union. Before moving back home to San Diego in 2017, Ryan spent eight years in national politics and was an appointee in the Obama Administration, where he worked on climate change and international development at USAID.



    Director; Chair - Governance Committee


    Suzanne is a San Diego native who has spent the last three decades facilitating policy makers, academic institutions, government agencies, and industry leaders in defining and achieving success. Her work has focused on fostering strategic intent, building resource development capacity, cultivating collaborative partnerships, and demystifying organizational dynamics.



    Director; Chair - Finance Committee

    President & CEO, San Diego Housing Federation

    Steve is a values-driven professional who is committed to achieving lasting, positive changes in the urban communities of San Diego.

    His efforts are directed through the conscientious practice of architecture, personal investment in sustainable economic development, and advocacy for quality affordable housing & public transit.



    Director; KAN Chair - Backcountry 

    Senior Biologist, ICF

    Holly is a Senior Biologist with ICF with more than 25 years of experience.  She has been instrumental in the San Diego region’s Multiple Species Conservation Planning programs for many years, including with state and local governments. 

    Holly looks for opportunities to integrate climate resiliency and adaptation into biodiversity management using nature-based solutions and new policy initiatives. She has a Master’s degree in Geography from San Diego State University and a Bachelor’s degree in Ecology from UC San Diego, Revelle College.



    Director; KAN Chair - Urban Core 

    Principal, AVRP Skyport



    Director; KAN Chair - San Diego Bay 


    Director; Chair - Marketing Committee 


    Director; Chair - Government Relations Committee 

    Knowledge to Action Networks

    C-3's Knowledge Action Networks (KANs) bring together local thought leaders from planning, design, policy, academia, community development, and more to discuss our region’s distinctive and pressing land use challenges.


    Creating Civic Community (C-3) is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to education and advocacy on issues of policy, planning, and design throughout the San Diego region. Federal Tax ID: 95-2593199


    1041 Market St, #156

    San Diego, CA 92101


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