Board of Directors
Western’s five-member board of directors comprise the governing body of Western. Western’s Board of Directors are responsible to the members of the public of their respective division, and to the general public within the Western service area, for the proper conduct of Western affairs.
Directors are elected to four-year terms by the registered voters in five geographic divisions. Divisions are apportioned by population. Terms are staggered to ensure continuity. Directors must reside within their elected division.
Board of Directors Meetings
Western’s Board of Directors generally meets on the first and third Wednesday of each month at 9:30 a.m. in the Board Room located at 14205 Meridian Parkway in Riverside, California.
All Board Meetings are open to the public. Click here to view meeting agendas and minutes.
- Division 1 Steve Adams
- Division 2 Gracie Torres
- Division 3 Brenda Dennstedt
- Division 4 Donald G. Galleano
- Division 5 S.R. "Al" Lopez
Details about Director Adams coming soon.
Division 1 includes a portion of the City of Riverside located north of Highway 91 and extending to the San Bernardino County line (see map).
Western Municipal Water District appoints new Director to Division 1 seat
The Western Municipal Water District (Western) Board of Directors on Wednesday, July 1, 2020, announced the appointment of Steve Adams to the Division 1 seat. Adams was subsequently sworn in and took his seat on the dais.
The appointment comes after the seat was left vacant by the passing of former Director Robert Stockton on Wednesday, May 13, 2020. Division 1 includes a portion of the City of Riverside located north of Highway 91 and extending to the San Bernardino County line (see map).
After interviewing four qualifying candidates, Western’s Board of Directors noted that they were impressed with the caliber and number of candidates expressing interest in the vacant seat. The Board’s appointment was ultimately based on Mr. Adams’ experience, long history of public service, commitment to the community, and his ability to build rapport with constituents.
Director Steve Adams is a long-time resident of the City of Riverside, living within the Division 1 boundaries for more than 50 years. An active community member, Adams previously served on the Riverside City Council for 15 years. Director Adams is a retiree of the Riverside Police Department, where he served for 15 years.
The Division 1 Director’s seat will be placed on the ballot for the November 3, 2020, general election. The newly appointed Director will hold the office until the general election results are certified.
To support a public and transparent appointment process and ensure the public was informed about the opportunity to apply and/or provide comment, the vacancy was announced through legally required public notices, and supported by a newspaper ad, targeted digital media outreach, customer emails, and engagement within various online community groups.
A committed water quality and compliance professional, Gracie Torres joined Western’s Board of Directors in December 2018. She serves Division 2 which includes the City of Riverside located south of the 91 freeway, March Air Reserve Base, portions of Lake Mathews, Woodcrest, Mission Grove, and Orangecrest.
Gracie Torres is a previous recipient of the Western - Lois B. Krieger Endowed Scholarship. She received the award while attending California State University San Bernardino. She is a water chemist and water quality compliance planner with Riverside County Flood Control and Water Conservation District. She is also proud to say that she is a product of Riverside schools.
Director Torres serves as a member of Western’s Engineering, Operations and Water Resources Committee as well as the Community and Government Affairs Committee. She also serves on the joint committees for Western and Rancho California Water Districts. In addition, she is also Western’s representative for the March Joint Powers Authority Successor Agency Oversight Committee. Director Torres serves as the District’s alternate representative for the Western Riverside Council of Governments Executive Committee, the Santa Ana Watershed Project Agreement 23, the joint committees of Eastern and Elsinore Valley Municipal Water Districts and the Western Riverside County Regional Wastewater Authority.
Director Torres has dedicated her career to protecting and conserving our water resources as well as educating the next generation of scientists. “As a water quality professional, I have monitored the water quality of both surface water lakes and stormwater systems throughout Riverside County. Ensuring that water resources are properly maintained, allocated, and utilized has become my life’s passion.”
Gracie Torres and her husband live in Riverside with their three children. Her current term on the Western Board of Directors expires in December 2022.
Email Director Torres
Brenda Dennstedt | Secretary-Treasurer
An experienced water education advocate, Brenda Dennstedt joined Western’s Board of Directors in January 2007 and was subsequently re-elected in 2010, 2014, and 2018. Director Dennstedt represents Division 3, which includes Lake Mathews, properties located south of Cajalco Road and west of the 215 Freeway, Lake Elsinore, Temecula, Canyon Lake, Wildomar, Rainbow, and Murrieta.
Director Dennstedt is committed to maintaining a standard of excellence by consistently demonstrating active engagement in all of her many roles throughout the region. Ms. Dennstedt was elected to the Murrieta County Water District board in 2003, which merged with Western in late 2005. She serves on Western’s Murrieta Advisory committee. She also sits on the board for Western’s Community and Government Affairs and Finance committees. In addition, Director Dennstedt is Western’s representative for the Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority and the Western Riverside Council of Governments Executive Committee.
Director Dennstedt has dedicated her service to the region through her consistent support of water education and regional representation. She serves on the joint committees of Elsinore Valley, Rancho California, and Eastern Municipal Water Districts. Director Dennstedt is also the representative for the Santa Rosa Regional Resource Authority, Lake Elsinore and San Jacinto Watersheds Authority. She also serves as the District’s alternate representative for the Temescal Valley Municipal Advisory Council and the Association of the California Water Agencies Joint Powers Insurance Authority.
Director Dennstedt’s current term on the Western Board of Directors expires in December 2022.
Email Director Dennstedt
Donald D. Galleano | President
A champion of regional water interests, Donald D. Galleano joined Western’s Board of Directors in 2004. He represents Division 4, which includes the cities of Eastvale, Jurupa Valley, and Norco.
As Western’s sole representative on the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California Board (MWD), Director Galleano is responsible for acting on behalf of the interests of the nearly one million customers who receive their water both directly and indirectly from Western. Currently, he serves on MWD’s Engineering & Operations, Agriculture and Industry Relations, Communications and Legislation, and Integrated Resources Planning Committees.
Director Galleano’s leadership role in the greater watershed also includes a seat on the Chino Basin Watermaster Board. He also serves as a board member for Western’s Engineering Operations and Water Resources Committee. Director Galleano serves as Western’s alternate representative for the Riverside Advisory Committee and the Chino Desalter Authority. In addition, Mr. Galleano also represents Western on the Joint-Inland Orange County Caucuses.
Director Galleano is a third-generation winegrower at the Historic Cantu-Galleano Ranch, home to Galleano Winery, a historic local treasure and living wine museum in Mira Loma. Galleano Winery is a highly-acclaimed dry farming operation, a statement to Director Galleano’s formidable commitment to water supply sustainability.
Director Galleano is a past president of the Western Riverside County Businessman’s Association and the Jurupa Chamber of Commerce. He is currently serving on the National Orange Show Foundation Board and the Los Angeles County Fair Association Board. He also serves as the Chairman of the Pacific Rim Wine Competition.
Director Galleano’s current term on the Western Board of Directors expires in December 2020.
Email Director Galleano
S.R. "Al" Lopez | Vice President
A pillar in the water quality community and in Riverside County, S.R. “Al” Lopez joined Western’s Board of Directors in January 2001. He represents Division 5, which includes the City of Corona, Home Gardens, El Cerrito, and a portion of Temescal Canyon.
Mr. Lopez has been an active community partner throughout his service on the board. He represents Western on committees for several agencies, including the Western Riverside County Regional Wastewater Authority; the Temescal Valley Municipal Advisory Council; and the Association of California Water Agencies Joint Powers Insurance Authority Liability Committee.
In addition, Director Lopez serves as Western’s alternate representative for the Santa Rosa Regional Resources Authority Committee and the Joint Inland-Orange County Caucuses. His leadership in the region includes membership on Western’s Finance Committee and his roles on the joint committees of Western and Elsinore Valley Municipal Water Districts.
Director Lopez was honored in February 2005 by Congressman Ken Calvert with a Congressional Record Tribute for 25 years of Community Service. He earned an Associate of Arts degree from Riverside Community College and received “The Watershed Certificate” award from Chapman University in Orange, California. Lopez is the owner of SR Consulting specializing in business, governmental relations, and real estate. In addition to his unwavering commitment to community service, Director Lopez enjoys riding his motorcycle.
Director Lopez is a veteran of the United States Marine Corp, serving from 1958 - 1962.
Director Lopez’s current term on the Western Board of Directors expires in December 2020.
Email Director Lopez