Manuel is driven by the idea that everyone should have a fair and just opportunity to be as healthy as possible. He is the Acting Director for the City of Pasadena Public Health Department, one of three city-based health departments in California. At the Public Health Department, Manuel works with his team to preserve population health by tracking threats to public health, delivering services to protect community health, and assessing the impact of public health programs. His work at the Pasadena Public Health Department is focused on improving quality of life through public health approaches based in health equity. Prior to joining the City of Pasadena, Manuel worked in a range of California municipal operations, both big and small. He received a Master of Public Administration from the University of Southern California in 2006 and a Master of Public Health from the University of Washington in 2023. He grew up in an unincorporated area in east Los Angeles County where he attended public schools, an experience that has propelled his career working to serve communities in need.