About Us

The Ladera Ranch Civic Council is the precursor to a local incorporated government which provides input to the Orange County governing boards as the Ladera Ranch civic representation. The Council serves Ladera in a capacity to encourage and gather public comment on a range of topics affecting the community.  The board members represent the interests of Ladera Ranch residents as their Civic Council. Meeting discussions provide input on:

  • Planning / Land Use
  • Public Safety
  • Public Works
  • Governance
  • Business Development
  • Other Municipal Related Services

The current Council includes:

  • Joe Brenneman – Chair
  • Ed Gow – Vice Chair
  • J Ocana – Treasurer
  • Matthew Bottomly – Secretary
  • Rosemary Scott – Councilmember
  • Justin Finch – Councilmember
  • Adam Henningsen – Councilmember

A copy of the LRCC Bylaws can be found here – Ladera Ranch Civic Council Bylaws

Joe Brenneman – Chair (Elected 2017, Elected 2019)

Term expires 2021


Joe Brenneman was elected to a 2-year term on the Council in September, 2017. He and his wife, Beth, have lived in Ladera Ranch with their four sons since 2005.  They selected Ladera Ranch following an exhaustive and months-long search after relocating to southern California from the Midwest. After falling in love with their new neighborhood, they decided to make this their permanent home and have made plans to eventually retire here.

Joe grew up in Kansas City, Mo. and attended the University of Kansas – where he earned a BS degree in Journalism.  He later went back to KU, while working and raising a family, to earn his MBA in Marketing.  Joe began his career as a journalist and soon moved into sales and marketing roles at various media companies – first focusing on traditional media advertising and then transitioning into new media opportunities available online and through social media.  His career advanced through promotions to leadership positions in sales and marketing – and ultimately to the Executive Boards that ran local media outlets in areas such as Kansas City, Baltimore, Orange County, Los Angeles and San Diego.  He was recruited to lead revenue-generating sales, marketing and product development teams by companies such as ABC/Capital Cities, Knight Ridder, Disney, Freedom Communications and Tribune Company.

Joe’s passion has always been to help small business owners and executives reach their personal and professional goals. He is the President and Owner of The Growth Coach of South OC, a business and sales coaching company that utilizes a proprietary system – The Strategic Business Mindset – with a 20-year successful track record of delivering proven results.  Joe is a certified Growth Coach.

Ed Gow – Vice Chair (Elected 2018, Elected 2020)

Term expires 2022


A long-time senior executive with an Orange County-based sports and entertainment-focused technology company, Ed Gow has resided in Ladera Ranch with his wife Andrea, and their sons Jack and Eli since 2011, having relocated from Washington.

Ed hails originally from Colorado, where he attended the University of Colorado at Boulder before moving into business administration with the Denver Nuggets/Colorado Avalanche, the Utah Jazz, and as the assistant director of athletics at his alma mater.  He has been an ardent supporter of San Juan Hills High School and has served for four years as a mentor with the Tiger Woods Foundation’s Earl Woods Scholarship Program, and as a Cub Scout leader and youth sports coach.  Drawn initially to Ladera Ranch, by its highly rated schools and tight-knit neighborhoods, Ed’s strong sense of civic responsibility has driven his interest in supporting the Council to ensure that our community remains an important voice in shaping the future of south Orange County.

J. Ocana – Treasurer (Elected 2020) 

Term expires 2022


J. Ocana grew up in Orange County, California where he attended Westminster High School. He attended the University of Southern California where he graduated with a BS in Business while working full time thru school. He would go on to earn his Executive MBA while working as a Sales Director for a major corporation.  He has worked for global companies in sales and executive management such as General Electric, Nokia, and AT&T and successful venture backed startups in high tech as a Director and VP of Sales. He has been involved in multiple startups in Orange County, and most recently is the Co-founder, President & COO of Reaction Audio Visual, an event solutions and virtual broadcast company for large scale events, trade shows, and conventions. Combined he has over 30 years of management and executive experience in the business world working in Fortune 100 companies, with VC funded start-ups, and starting his own businesses along with a solid business education. He currently lives in Ladera Ranch with his wife Jennifer and they have four children.

Matthew Bottomly – Secretary (Elected 2020) 

Term expires 2022


Rosemary Scott- Councilmember (Elected 2019) 

Term expires 2021


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Justin Finch– Councilmember (Appointed 2020) 

Term expires 2021


Justin Finch has been a Ladera Ranch Civic Councilmember since February 2020, and is currently the chair of the Local Governance Committee.  Justin lives in Oak Knoll with his wife and two daughters. You’ll catch the Finch Family around town enjoying Ladera Ranch’s many walking trails and parks.

Justin is the Senior Water Efficiency Specialist for Moulton Niguel Water District where he administers water use efficiency programs, services, and policies. Justin leads coordination efforts with other government agencies and establishes working relationships with local businesses, property managers, and homeowners.  Justin is also currently the Board Chair of the California Water Efficiency Partnership, a state-wide organization focused on water efficiency policy, programs, and research.

Justin graduated from San Jose State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Studies, and California Polytechnic State University with a Master of Public Policy degree.  He is also certified as a Water Use Efficiency Practitioner, Certified Landscape Irrigation Auditor, Certified Landscape Water Manager, and a Qualified Water Efficient Landscaper. 

Adam Henningsen- Councilmember (Elected 2020) 

Term expires 2022


Adam Henningsen was elected to a 2-year term on the Council in September 2020.  Adam and his wife Camille, moved to Ladera Ranch in 2016 before starting their family of four, including a son and a daughter.

Adam grew up in northern Nevada and attended University of Nevada, Reno graduating with a BS in Mechanical Engineering.  He went on to work in various industries in engineering management including Anheuser-Busch and The Walt Disney Company before his current role as Sr. Program Manager focused on cost improvement initiatives within the consumer products industry.

In his free time, Adam enjoys camping, hiking, making wine, innovating and spending time with his family traveling.

Adam has always had a passion for serving his community.  He currently enjoys volunteering in his local church and previously enjoyed serving with Active 20-30 and Big Brothers Big Sisters.  Adam is proud to serve Ladera Ranch and looks forward to upholding and pushing forward the high standards set by previous leaders within the community.