Civic Wellbeing Partners

Julie Rusk

Founder, Head 
Civic Wellbeing Partners

Julie is Founder of Civic Wellbeing Partners. She was formerly Santa Monica’s first Chief Civic Wellbeing Officer. She brings to the work more than a quarter century of experience in local government and nonprofit management. Prior to heading the Office of Civic Wellbeing, Julie served as the City of Santa Monica’s Assistant Director of Community & Cultural Services, where she oversaw a range of initiatives in human services, culture, education, recreation, and place-making. She launched the Cradle to Career Initiative, a public/private partnership to help Santa Monica youth flourish in every aspect of their lives, from conception to careers. That groundbreaking program, like the Wellbeing Project, drew on data from multiple sources and created the City’s first Youth Wellbeing Report Card. Julie is known for approaching social problems with compassion, an instinct for collaboration, and an acuity for measurement to ensure that programs are effective. She lives in Santa Monica where she and her husband raised two children, and a lively springer-spaniel.

Catalina Langen

Program Manager
Civic Wellbeing Partners

As Community Engagement Coordinator in the Office of Civic Wellbeing, Catalina lifts up promising practices, supports creative engagement strategies, and uses the findings of the City’s Wellbeing Index to drive her work. She believes that equity-focused solutions have the power to strengthen the wellbeing of our communities, and oversees the Wellbeing Microgrants program, supporting residents as they advance their ideas for community wellbeing. Previously, Catalina worked at the California State University San Marcos focusing on civic learning, and creating opportunities for students to connect with community leaders and city officials, dialogue about democracy, and serve the community. A Southern California native, Catalina graduated from the University of California Santa Barbara and lives in Los Angeles with her partner Nick, their sourdough starter Jeffrey, and a dozen plants.

partnering organizations

With original funding by the Bloomberg Philanthropies' Mayors Challenge, The Wellbeing Project draws on expertise from multiple disciplines to define and measure community wellbeing.

Through a competitive proposal process, RAND Corporation, a nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization based in Santa Monica, was selected as the City's research partner to develop The Local Wellbeing Index, a key component of The Wellbeing Project. RAND Corporation has chosen to partner with the New Economics Foundation (nef), a nonprofit research center that specializes in wellbeing analysis, city planning, and policy development. Finally, we partnered with the innovation firm Daylight Design to create a blueprint for a rich, human-centered platform as part of the long-term vision for The Local Wellbeing Index.


The Wellbeing Project Panel of Experts has been assembled by RAND Corporation, in partnership with the New Economics Foundation (nef), to draw upon the deep knowledge base of leading researchers from various disciplines to inform and advise development of the framework for the first Local Wellbeing Index.

Click here to read more about each panelist, including:

The City of Santa Monica's Office of Civic Wellbeing has closed.
Our work continues as Civic Wellbeing Partners, a non-governmental organization, and we will continue to update this website and our social media. Stay tuned!