Villagers vying for seat on SECO Board after trustee’s sudden resignation

Richard Belles

Three Villagers have stepped forward to seek a seat on the SECO Energy Board of Trustees after another Villager serving on the board suddenly resigned.

A large crowd gathered Jan. 24 at Savannah Center and re-elected Richard Belles to the SECO Board of Trustees. He fended off a challenge from Villager Bryan Lifsey, a Community Development District 2 supervisor. Belles, a Village of Polo Ridge resident, had served on the board since 2013. In March, SECO announced that Belles had resigned from the board. No reason was given.

Per the SECO Energy Bylaws, the cooperative will hold a special District 3 meeting May 13 to elect a new trustee to replace Belles.

Three Villagers have thrown their hats in the ring: 

Barry Evans
Barry Evans

• Barry Evans served on the SECO Board of Trustees for eight years before resigning after he moved out of District 3. He has since moved back into District 3 and is seeking to return to the board. Evans enjoyed a long career as a city manager in various parts of the country before retiring to The Villages.

Evans is also a columnist for Villages-News.com. His “Life in The Villages” column appears each weekend.

Aileen Milton

• Aileen Milton is probably best known for her role as the leader of The Villages Tea Party. She is also the founder of The Villages Conservative Media. She has previous experience as a certified property manager in both commercial and residential real estate. Milton also served as a volunteer in 1992 at the Republican National Convention.

She has been circulating a flyer indicated she has won the endorsement of outgoing trustee Belles.

Bryan Lifsey

• Lifsey has also decided to again seek the SECO Energy District 3 seat. In addition to serving as chairman of the Community Development District 2 Board of Supervisors, Lifsey has been a longtime fixture as the office manager at Seniors vs Crime in The Villages. He and his wife live in the Village of Alhambra.

Polls will open at 4:30 p.m. May 13 at Savannah Center. Election results are expected by 6 p.m.

Households in District 3 get one vote each. 

This map shows the the nine districts in the SECO territory.

District 3 is one of nine districts with representation on the SECO Board.

District 3 encompasses a sizable chunk of The Villages, stretching from County Road 42 in Marion County down to Wildwood.   

SECO has indicated that District 3 homeowners are being notified by letter about the election.

SECO Energy is the third largest cooperative in the state and the seventh largest in the nation. At the end of 2018, the not-for-profit cooperative was delivering power to 205,887 service locations.