A military veteran who also enjoyed a long career in law enforcement is running for Seat 4 in Community Development District 12.
Andrew Bilardello, of the Village of Fenney, said he enjoys living in Florida’s Friendliest Hometown and vows to put his varied life experiences to good use if elected.
“I will bring a lifetime of dedication, public service experience and a high standard of excellence to VCDD 12,” he said. “We all have a substantial financial and emotional investment in our homes, families and community. I will advocate for governance that ensures these investments continue to benefit our property values, as well as our sense of community safety, beauty and appeal.”
Bilardello grew up in Broward County and enlisted in the Air Force as a security police specialist after graduating from high school. After receiving an honorable discharge in 1977, he continued his military service in the Air Force Reserve. And in 2001, he transferred to Army Reserve’s elite Criminal Investigation Division, where he served for eight years.
Bilardello started his law enforcement career in 1978 with the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office. While rising through the ranks of the agency, he earned both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in public administration. He also was selected to attend the prestigious three-month Administrative Officer’s Course at the Southern Police Institute at the University of Louisville in Kentucky, where he honed his skills in management, supervision and leadership.
Bilardello said those skills benefited him greatly when he served as an executive officer in the Support Services Division of the sheriff’s office.
“I prepared and managed operating budgets exceeding $20 million and oversaw the agency’s aviation, marine, K-9, mounted and traffic units,” he said.
Bilardello eventually was promoted to captain and served as district commander/police chief in Belle Glade. He also spent time as a patrol commander supervising a daily work force of 200-plus deputies.
After retiring from the sheriff’s office, Bilardello relocated to New Mexico to serve as director of public safety for the Village of Taos Ski Valley. In that job, he was responsible for all public safety matters, including law enforcement, fire service, EMS and mountain search and rescue. During that time, Bilardello also served on many advisory boards pertaining to public safety within the Taos community.
“While I loved my life in the mountains of northern New Mexico, I returned to Florida to care for my mother and to enjoy our amazing lifestyle here in The Villages,” he said. “I could have moved anywhere, but I chose The Villages because I absolutely love it here and wish to be a voice for my neighbors.”
Bilardello is running against Mary Sandridge Dzuro and Theresita “Tita” Dumagsa. Joan Steep is currently serving in Seat 4 in CDD 12 but has not filed to run for the seat.
CDD 12, which includes 1,490 acres and 2,490 home sites, was initially established in 2011 as Wildwood Springs Community Development District. In 2016, the City of Wildwood adopted an ordinance which legally changed the name to CDD 12 and amended the existing boundaries.
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