By Miriam Raftery
December 29, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) – These local leaders who passed on in 2019 left their indelible marks on our communities, gone but never forgotten.
GEORGE BAILEY -- Shortly after celebrating his 100th birthday, former La Mesa Mayor and San Diego County Supervisor died at his home on March 11th of congestive heart failure. He served on the San Diego Association of Regional Governments (SANDAG), chaired the California Councils of Government and was director of the National Association of Regional Councils.. The George Bailey Detention Center was named in his honor, due to his support for winning voter approval to fund construction. He was also instrumental in preserving the cross atop Mt. Helix and improving traffic in our region. He is remembered as a leader who left behind an indelible stamp on East County and the San Diego region, drawing respect from colleagues on both sides of the political aisle.
JIM BELL -- Jim Bell, ecological designer and internationally recognized expert on sustainable development who twice ran for mayor of San Diego, was a graduate of El Capitan High School in Lakeside. His vision was vast: to transform the San Diego/Tijuana Regional economy” from one that relied almost entirely on imported water and energy into an economy that would be prosperous and 100% renewable--energy, water and food self-sufficient--creating a model for others to emulate around the world. He died at age 77 of complications from a stroke.