McClain, Wood Join TEC Board

August 28, 2023

The 54 voting delegates in attendance at the 83rd TEC Annual Meeting in August elected Mark McClain, general manager of Big Country Electric Cooperative, representing Group 4, and Bryan Wood, general manager of Deep East Texas Electric Cooperative, representing Group 1, to three-year terms on the statewide association’s board of directors.

The new board selected Neil Hesse, general manager of PenTex Energy, as its new chair. He replaces Kelly Lankford, executive vice president and CEO of Concho Valley Electric Cooperative, whose term ended at the meeting.

In his report to the membership, Lankford thanked TEC’s staff for its assistance during his tenure and his own board at CVEC for supporting his service to the membership. He implored his colleagues, his fellow co-op leaders, to get involved.

“The last three years on this board have been very enjoyable,” he said. “I encourage you, if you ever have the opportunity: Run for the board and try to make a difference.”

CVEC’s directors chose Lankford to become the co-op’s CEO 15 years ago, when he was just 29 years old. His predecessor, Sid Long, had died suddenly.

“To my surprise, the co-op machine just kept moving right along. It has to for the membership,” Lankford said. “I learned early on that we’re all replaceable.”

He hasn’t stopped learning since.

“I’ll leave you with this,” Lankford said. “If you ever feel like you’ve got this under control and there’s nothing else anybody can teach you about cooperatives, slap yourself upside the head because the industry is passing you by.

“Get out of your comfort zone and go learn something.”


2023–24 TEC Board of Directors

Chair: Neil Hesse, PenTex Energy, Group 3
Vice chair: Avan Irani, Nueces EC, Group 7
Secretary-treasurer: Bryan Wood, Deep East Texas EC, Group 1
Brandon Young, Heart of Texas EC, Group 2
Mark McClain, Big Country EC, Group 4
Dale Ancell, South Plains EC, Group 5
Julie Parsley, Pedernales EC, Group 6