Van Smith of Billingsley has served on CAEC’s Board of Trustees since May 1994 and was elected Chairman in August 2021. Smith has earned his Credentialed Cooperative Director and Board Leadership certificates as well as the Director Gold certificate awarded by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. Smith, along with the other CAEC Trustees, serves on the only Board in the nation to be 100 percent Board member commitment at the Leadership Circle level and spouse at the President’s Club level to the nonpartisan political action committee, Action Committee for Rural Electrification (ACRE).
He currently serves on the Cooperative Utility Services, LLC (CUS) Board, a subsidiary of CAEC and Dixie Electric Cooperative that serves Maxwell/Gunter AFB and served on the PowerSouth Board, CAEC’s power supply cooperative, from 2015 until 2019. Before joining the CAEC Board, he and his late wife, Ann, represented CAEC at the Alabama Council of Cooperative’s Annual Co-op Couples Conference and served as the host couple the following year. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Agri-Science Education from Auburn University, a Master’s degree in Agri-Science Education from Alabama A&M and a K-12 Certification in Administrative Education from the University of Montevallo.
Smith taught Agri-Science for 13 years and served as assistant principal of Billingsley School for eight years before becoming principal in 1998, a position he held until his retirement in 2013. He has been active in many professional and civic groups. Smith serves on the board of the Autauga County Cattlemen’s Association; he served as president for four years and as a current board member of the Alabama Farmer’s Federation and currently serves as the County President. He worked with the National FFA Livestock Evaluation Career Development Event committee for 34 years and served as the committee Superintendent from 2008-2014. He also serves as Superintendent of the Autauga Agribition Livestock Show for the past 21 years. He was appointed by the Governor in 2014 to fill the unexpired term of A.G. Carter as the District 3 Autauga County Commissioner and was elected to serve a four-year term in 2016. Smith was elected to represent Alabama State House District 42 in 2019. The seat represents Autauga and Chilton counties and was left vacant after the passing of Rep. Jimmy Martin.
Smith and his family have been members of CAEC since 1980. He has three sons, one daughter and eleven grandchildren. Smith and his wife, Fran, are active members of Indian Grave Baptist Church.