Irvine Company Chairman Donald Bren has assembled a team of the real estate industry’s most experienced and proven executives. Each brings vast expertise and tireless dedication to the continual pursuit of excellence across the company’s wide-reaching best-in-class investment portfolio.
Donald Bren, Chairman of the Board of Irvine Company, has been deeply involved in California real estate as a master planner and a master builder for over 50 years.
Born in Los Angeles, California, Bren earned a degree in economics and business administration from the University of Washington. Following his education, he served three years as an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps.
Bren joined the Mission Viejo Company in 1963 as president, initiating the master planning and master building of the 11,000-acre new community of Mission Viejo, California. In 1967, Bren sold his interest in the Mission Viejo Company to expand his activities in new master-planned communities within Southern California including Westlake Village and Newhall Ranch, and Foster City in the San Francisco Bay Area.
In 1977, Bren became a member of the investment group that purchased Irvine Company from the Irvine Foundation. Bren was elected Chairman of the Board in 1983 and later became the principal shareholder.
During the last 40 years, under Bren’s leadership and vision, the Irvine Company has professionally planned and master built the all-new City of Irvine and the Newport Coast, creating one of America’s most desirable regions. The City of Irvine currently has a population of more than 300,000, growing to an estimated 325,000 people over the next 10 years, with an equal number of employment positions.
Bren maintains a long tradition of philanthropy and environmental stewardship, supporting causes ranging from environmental preservation to education and scientific research.
Business Week has recognized Bren as one of America’s top philanthropists. His total philanthropic giving is in excess of $2.1 Billion. The European London Times recognized him as one of the top 10 people in the world for his vision and contributions to green and environmental causes.
- Endowed over 60 permanent distinguished professor chairs at the University of California and California Institute of Technology.
- Principal financial contributor of Caltech’s Space-based Solar Power Project.
- Founded one of the nation’s first graduate-level environmental schools, the Donald Bren School of Environmental Science and Management at University of California, Santa Barbara.
- Initiated the University of California’s first dedicated school of computer science, the Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Sciences at University of California, Irvine.
- Gifted more than 57,500 acres for permanently preserved open space and parklands network in the United States. It is the only land in California to receive both the California State and United States National Natural Landmark designation.
- University of California Presidential Medal
- California Institute of Technology’s Highest Honor
- Marine Corps University Foundation’s General Leonard F. Chapman Jr. Medal
- American Academy of Arts & Sciences Fellow
Executive Management Committee
Charles (Chip) Fedalen Jr.
Chief Operating Officer
Charles (Chip) Fedalen Jr. is President of Irvine Company. Mr. Fedalen works closely with the Chairman on strategy, organization and the long term focus of the company. He also oversees the corporate support functions. Mr. Fedalen, who serves on the Executive Management Committee, joined the company in 2014.
Previously, Mr. Fedalen served as Executive Vice President and Group Head for Wells Fargo Commercial Real Estate’s institutional lending platform in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. He also served on Wells Fargo’s Management Committee.
Mr. Fedalen is a past trustee of the Urban Land Institute. Mr. Fedalen also served as a Captain in the United States Army Reserve.
Mr. Fedalen holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Los Angeles, with a double major in Scandinavian languages and political science. He also attended the University of Lund in Sweden. Mr. Fedalen received his law degree from the University of Southern California.
Frank Abeling is Chief Operating Officer of Irvine Company and serves on the company’s Executive Management Committee. In his role, Mr. Abeling is responsible for supporting and guiding the company’s real estate activities.
Since joining Irvine Company in 2010, Mr. Abeling has served in various roles, most recently Executive Vice President of Real Estate Operations. Before that, he was Senior Vice President, Strategic Planning and Analysis, where he led the company’s financial planning, investment analysis, and strategic research functions.
Prior to joining Irvine Company, Mr. Abeling was with Chicago-based M3 Capital Partners, where he specialized in real estate private equity advisory and capital raising. Earlier in his career, Mr. Abeling analyzed and originated commercial mortgage investments for Prudential Mortgage Capital Company in San Francisco.
Mr. Abeling holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and earned an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management.
Chief Financial Officer
Group President, Commercial Properties
Marc Ley is Chief Financial Officer for Irvine Company and serves on the company’s Executive Management Committee. In his role, he is responsible for the company’s Corporate Finance, Tax, and Financial Services groups, in addition to directly managing the company’s Investment Division as Chief Investment Officer.
Mr. Ley joined the company in 1999 as Senior Vice President of Capital Markets and was promoted to Group SVP and Chief Financial Officer in 2001. In 2013, Mr. Ley was promoted to Executive Vice President and Chief Investment Officer, focusing his attention on building and leading the company’s Investment Division, which is responsible for managing the company’s investment portfolios and operations.
Prior to joining Irvine Company, Mr. Ley was employed by Pacific Life Insurance Company in Newport Beach, California, where he established its Real Estate Capital Markets division. Mr. Ley is a member of the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts and has served on the advisory boards of several local nonprofit organizations.
Mr. Ley holds bachelor degrees in finance and in real estate from the University of Wisconsin, Madison and earned a master’s degree in real estate from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, where he was mentored by the late Dr. James A. Graaskamp.
Jonathan Brinsden is Group President of Irvine Company’s Commercial Properties. He is responsible for the leadership and overall performance of the Office, Retail, Corporate Business Properties and Commercial Design & Construction divisions. The 65M square foot commercial portfolio includes properties in Orange County, San Diego, West Los Angeles, Silicon Valley, Chicago and New York City. Mr. Brinsden, who serves on the company’s Executive Management Committee, joined in 2021.
Previously, Mr. Brinsden served as Chief Executive Officer of Midway and guided the company’s strategy, growth, and creation of a $2 billion portfolio of mixed-use assets over a 20-year period. Prior to joining Midway, Mr. Brinsden served as President and Chief Operating Officer at Hamm Corporation, a Houston-based development company.
Mr. Brinsden is a member of the Urban Land Institute (ULI), the past Chairman of ULI Americas, former Global Board Director, and a Governing Trustee and ULI Foundation Governor.
Mr. Brinsden has been active in a number of civic leadership and charitable organizations focused on parks and greenspace, homelessness, and education. He is also a former adjunct professor at the University of Houston Bauer Graduate Real Estate Program and guest lecturer at Texas A&M University and Rice University.
Mr. Brinsden holds a bachelor’s degree in construction science and a bachelor’s degree in environmental design. He also holds a masters degree in land and real estate development from Texas A&M University.
Real Estate Division Executives
Division Executive Vice President, Office Properties
President, Retail Properties
President, Apartment Development
President, Corporate Business Properties
President, Apartment Operations
President, Commercial Design & Construction
Roger DeWames is Division Executive Vice President of Irvine Company’s Office Properties. He is responsible for the leadership and performance of the division, including a 54M square foot fully-integrated customer-centric platform of asset management, development, leasing, finance and investments, operations, marketing, and technology enablement.
Prior to his current role, Mr. DeWames led development, acquisition and reinvestment activities for the company’s office and self storage portfolios, including planning and development of over 8M square feet of ground-up office projects.
Prior to joining Irvine Company, Mr. DeWames led development, acquisitions and investment in the Orange County office of Hines, including ground-up development and acquisitions of multiple product types.
Mr. DeWames holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business and a bachelor’s of science degree in biology from the University of California, San Diego. He previously served as a Board member of NAIOP.
Ken Gillett is President of Irvine Company’s Retail Properties. He is responsible for leading the best-in-class operations group with great diligence and care, driving the performance of 9M square feet of first-class shopping centers and community centers. He joined the company in 2012.
Mr. Gillett has nearly 35 years of retail and shopping center management experience, with 25 years in the property management arena. Ken’s professional career began in shopping centers as a retailer. With his keen retailer perspective as a foundation, Mr. Gillett transitioned to the operational and development side of the retail industry. Mr. Gillett’s career includes positions in specialty leasing, asset management and shopping center operations.
Mr. Gillett received his Certified Shopping Center Manager (CSM) designation from the International Center of Shopping Centers (ICSC) in 1995 and his Senior Certified Shopping Center Manager (SCSM) designation in 2004. He previously served as the Chairman of ICSC’s CSM Committee.
He graduated from the University of La Verne with a bachelor’s degree in business administration and currently resides in Laguna Hills, California.
Todd Keller is President of Irvine Company’s Apartment Development. In this position, he oversees the company’s development efforts for all new apartment communities. Since joining the company in 2004, Mr. Keller has been involved with the underwriting, acquisition, design, entitlement and construction of more than 20,000 apartment homes throughout the state of California.
Prior to joining the Company, Mr. Keller worked as a senior associate in the assurance and advisory services group at Ernst & Young. Mr. Keller worked with multiple clients and engagement teams to provide financial reviews, advisory services and transaction support.
Mr. Keller holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the Marriott School of Business at Brigham Young University and earned an MBA from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan.
Roger Ploum is President of Irvine Company’s Corporate Business Properties. In his role, Mr. Ploum is responsible for the overall performance and leading all aspects of the group’s portfolio consisting of world-renowned The Resort at Pelican Hill and collection of golf courses, marinas, and cell site properties.
Prior to joining Irvine Company, Mr. Ploum served as a senior lodging executive for Walt Disney Parks and Resorts where he held a 16-year tenure leading hotels, theme parks, and resort operations in the U.S., France, and Japan.
Prior to Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, Mr. Ploum held various leadership roles with Sun International, Sonesta Hotels, and The Kessler Collection.
Mr. Ploum holds an MBA from Stetson University and a bachelor’s degree in hospitality management from the Hotelschool The Hague in the Netherlands.
Teresa Prestwood is President of Irvine Company’s Apartment Operations. In this position, Ms. Prestwood oversees all aspects of the management and operations of the company’s portfolio of apartment communities throughout California, including the property management, leasing, marketing, maintenance, and resident service functions.
Ms. Prestwood joined the Irvine Company in 1991. During her 30 year career with the Apartment Division, she has held many roles including: On-site Community Manager, Director of Community Management, Vice President of Operations, and Senior Vice President of Community Management prior to becoming President of Apartment Operations in 2022.
Ms. Prestwood is a California Real Estate Broker and designated Broker Officer for the Apartments Division. She is a Board Member of the California Apartment Association.
Tom Sullivan is President of Irvine Company’s Commercial Design & Construction. He is responsible for the implementation of development, redevelopment and reinvestment construction activities of the company’s Office and Retail divisions. In this role, he will also oversee the Office planning and design function and the Retail development team.
Mr. Sullivan and his dedicated team of real estate professionals are committed to bringing to life vibrant workplace and retail communities designed to lead and align with progressive trends in the market. He has been involved in high profile projects in Silicon Valley, Orange County, San Diego, Chicago and New York City, including office, hotel and retail developments.
Mr. Sullivan holds a bachelor’s degree in applied economics from the University of San Francisco. He is currently a member of Lambda Alpha International.
Senior VP, Tax Counsel
Group Senior VP, Financial Services
Senior VP, Corporate Affairs
Senior VP, General Counsel & Secretary
Senior VP, Corporate Marketing
Senior VP, Corporate Finance & Treasurer
Senior VP, Human Resources
Senior VP, Chief Technology Officer
Gino J. Bianchini is Senior Vice President, Tax Counsel for Irvine Company. As head of the company’s Tax Department, Mr. Bianchini is responsible for three interrelated functions: tax planning, tax compliance and property tax. He joined the company in 2013.
Previously, Mr. Bianchini was a Shareholder in Tax Practice at Greenberg Traurig, and Principal in the Federal Tax Services Group at Ernst & Young.
Mr. Bianchini holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of San Diego and earned his law degree and Master of Laws degree in taxation from Golden Gate University.
Mark Henigan is Group Senior Vice President, Financial Services, and Chief Accounting Officer. In this position, Mr. Henigan directs Irvine Company’s comprehensive accounting, payroll and internal audit operations.
Mr. Henigan joined Irvine Company as Senior Vice President of Financial and Information Services in 2006 and was promoted to his current position in 2009. From 2006 to 2012, Mr. Henigan was also responsible for the company’s Information Technology department. Prior to Irvine Company, he was an audit partner with the Real Estate Group of the international accounting firm Ernst & Young.
Mr. Henigan is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the California Society of Certified Public Accountants, among other professional associations and organizations. He currently serves on the board of Families Forward, a local nonprofit organization serving families that are homeless or at risk of homelessness. He is a graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he received a degree in business economics with an emphasis in accounting.
Paul Hernandez is Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs for Irvine Company. He is responsible for all external Corporate Affairs functions including communications, media relations, government and community relations, legislative affairs, regulatory and environmental affairs, and real estate entitlement.
Prior to leading Corporate Affairs, Mr. Hernandez served as Vice President of Government Relations managing the company’s advocacy and legislative affairs at the local, regional, state and federal levels of government.
Before joining Irvine Company in 2003, Mr. Hernandez was the West Coast Government Relations Manager for global defense and technology leader, Lockheed Martin IMS. Previously, he also served as Chief of Staff for an elected official on the Orange County Board of Supervisors.
Mr. Hernandez is a member of the Board of Directors and Executive Committee of the California Business Roundtable and a past Executive Committee member of the California Building Industry Association. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of California, Los Angeles, and is also a graduate of the CORO Foundation in Public Affairs.
Jason Maxwell is Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary for Irvine Company. In this role, he leads the company’s Legal, Risk Management and Records Management groups. He joined the company in 2021.
Previously, Mr. Maxwell served as Senior Vice President and Co-Head of the global Legal Department at the international real estate firm, Hines, as well as General Counsel for all public REITs and other public companies sponsored by Hines. During his tenure at Hines, he helped lead the successful acquisition or disposition of over 200 office, logistics, retail and multifamily assets across four continents with an aggregate transaction value of over $25 billion.
Prior to Hines, Mr. Maxwell was a Corporate and Securities Partner at Locke Liddell Sapp LLP (and a key member of its national REIT practice group). He has extensive experience in public and private company corporate governance, securities offerings, structuring and financing real estate acquisitions and dispositions and real estate investment funds and joint ventures. He was the founding Chairman of the Real Estate Law Committee of the Association of Corporate Counsel, and is a frequently requested speaker at Nareit and other real estate conferences. Mr. Maxwell is a member of the State Bar of Texas, and is a California Registered In-House Counsel.
Mr. Maxwell holds a Juris Doctorate from Georgetown University Law Center and a bachelor’s degree of business administration in finance from University of Miami, Florida.
Katie Nuñez is Senior Vice President, Corporate Marketing for Irvine Company. In her role, she sets the strategic direction for all aspects of Irvine Company’s marketing and brand communications.
Ms. Nuñez joined the company in 2007 and has held several marketing leadership roles within Apartment Communities, Office Properties and Land Sales & Homebuilding. Her experience across multiple divisions includes implementing industry-leading digital experiences and establishing marketing strategies for Santa Clara Square, Irvine Pacific and Promenade Village.
Ms. Nuñez holds a bachelor’s degree in english from Emory University and an MBA from University of Southern California.
Bryan Stevens is a Senior Vice President and Treasurer for Irvine Company. He leads Corporate Finance, which includes corporate and project level finance, interest rate risk management and treasury for the company. Mr. Stevens joined Irvine Company in 2014.
Previously, Mr. Stevens worked at Wells Fargo Bank for over 12 years in the Commercial Real Estate Group as a Senior Vice President and Team Leader. He originated debt for the bank’s balance sheet with real estate customers along with managing the overall bank relationship with these companies.
Mr. Stevens holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration and finance with an emphasis in real estate and investments from the University of Southern California.
Darren Thomas is Senior Vice President and head of Human Resources for Irvine Company. He is responsible for leading the company’s Human Resources strategy and oversees all aspects of the function, including talent acquisition, leadership development, training, compensation and benefits, HR information systems, and internal communications. Mr. Thomas joined Irvine Company in 2008.
During his career of more than 30 years, he has held leadership positions with several companies. Previously, he was Managing Director of Global Human Resources for Lehman Brothers Mortgage Banking Business. Earlier in his career, he held positions as Senior Vice President of Human Resources for Citigroup, Senior Vice President of Human Resources for Associates First Capital, and Senior Vice President for Alliance Data Systems, where he directed the firm’s global HR function.
Mr. Thomas has also worked with several nonprofits throughout his career, serving on boards for March of Dimes, YMCA and Big Brothers Big Sisters. He currently serves on the Board for United Cerebral Palsy of Orange County.
He holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Colorado State University and earned an MBA from Southern Methodist University.
Abe Wong is Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer for Irvine Company. In his role, Mr. Wong is responsible for overseeing the strategy, innovation and execution for all aspects of the company’s technology functions including: customer and workforce solutions, corporate applications and analytics, IT portfolio management and service delivery, and digital customer solutions.
Prior to joining Irvine Company, Mr. Wong served as the Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer for Viacom Media Networks & Paramount Pictures. He oversaw Viacom’s advanced marketing and advertising technologies to drive more efficient and effective campaigns. Mr. Wong also led successful efforts to enhance client and media services, marketing and sales systems, media content systems and technology solutions to support data and business intelligence and analytics.
Prior to Viacom & Paramount Pictures, Mr. Wong held roles including Head of Information Technology with Dreamworks SKG, Principal at Pittiglio, Rabin, Todd & McGrath consulting firm, and Regional Vice President with Divine, Inc. (formerly USWeb / CKS).
Mr. Wong holds a bachelor’s degree in engineering from Harvey Mudd College in Claremont, California.