Harris as Adjutant General
|Member of the|
Illinois House of Representatives
for the 53rd District
66th district (2011-2013)
January 2011 – January 2019
|Preceded by||Mark Walker|
|Succeeded by||Mark Walker|
January 1983 – January 1993
|Preceded by||District Created|
|Succeeded by||Carolyn H. Krause|
|35th Adjutant General of Illinois|
|Preceded by||Richard Austin|
|Succeeded by||Randal E. Thomas|
|Born||March 26, 1948|
|Residence||Arlington Heights, Illinois|
|Alma mater||Georgetown University (B.A.)|
U.S. Army CGSC (ILE)
|Branch/service||United States Army|
|Years of service||1970–2003|
|Unit||Illinois National Guard|
|Battles/wars||Operation Iraqi Freedom|
David C. Harris (born March 26, 1948) an American politician and retired military officer from Illinois who is currently the Director-designate for the Illinois Department of Revenue. He has previously served two tenures as a Republican member of the Illinois House of Representatives from 1983-1993 and 2011-2019 and as the Adjutant General of Illinois from 1999 to 2003.
Early life and career
Harris was born March 26, 1948, in Reading, Pennsylvania. He graduated from St. Viator High School in Arlington Heights. Harris graduated from Georgetown University. He became an associate member of the Chicago Board of Trade during the 1970s, but ceased trading prior to 2011. After a brief period of time in Pennsylvania, Harris moved to Arlington Heights, Illinois where he and his wife reside.
Harris joined the military in 1970 as a military policeman. In 1971, he attended Officer Candidate School and returned to serve as a platoon leader in the 471st Military Police Company of the District of Columbia Army National Guard. From 1974 until 1980, Harris served as a member of the Pennsylvania Army National Guard. In 1980, he joined the Illinois Army National Guard as an assistant correctional officer with the 33rd Military Police Battalion in Chicago. He was promoted to Staff Provost Marshal at the State Area Command in Springfield, Illinois. In 1989, he graduated from the United States Army Command and General Staff College. That same year, he became the Chief Historian. In 1992, he was promoted to the Commander of the 44th Support Center. In 1997, he was promoted to Section Chief of the Selective Service.
In July 1999, George Ryan named Harris the Adjutant General of Illinois to succeed Richard Austin. As Adjutant General, he was the principal advisor to the Governor of Illinois on military matters and served as the Commanding General of both the Illinois Army and Air National Guard. His responsibility the Guard’s daily operations and oversight of approximately 13,500 uniformed personnel. Harris was the first Adjutant General appointed under the criteria of Senate Bill 1227. Harris retired from the Illinois National Guard in 2003 and was succeeded as Adjutant General by Randal E. Thomas.
Post military service
Harris served on Ronald Reagan’s national advance staff in the 1976 Republican primary, and presidential elections of 1980 and 1984. He was elected an alternate delegate to the 1984 Republican National Convention. In 1987, Ronald Reagan appointed Harris a member of the Intergovernmental Advisory Council on Education.
First House tenure
In 1980, Illinois voters passed an amendment to the Illinois Constitution that abolished multi-member districts in the Illinois House of Representatives and the process of cumulative voting. In the 1982 general election, Harris ran as a Republican in the newly created 53rd district. His opponent in the general election was Democratic activist and Elk Grove Park Board commissioner Joan E. Brennan. The district was centered around Elk Grove Township. Harris defeated Brennan in the general election.
Harris lost the 1992 Republican primary to Carolyn H. Krause, a former Mayor of Mount Prospect, Illinois. After his loss, he joined the Illinois Hospital & Health Systems Association as the Senior Vice President for Government Relations. In this role, he directed the association's government relations programs at both the state and federal levels.
Second House tenure
In 2010, Harris ran again for the Illinois House of Representatives against incumbent Democrat Mark Walker in the 66th district. The 66th district, which had significant overlap on what was the 53rd district, included parts of Elk Grove Village, Mount Prospect, Arlington Heights, Des Plaines, Rolling Meadows, and Schaumburg, Illinois. Harris defeated Walker in the heavily Republican 2010 election.
After the decennial redistricting process, Harris was redistricted to the 53rd District in 2013. The 53rd house district includes parts of Arlington Heights, Des Plaines, Mount Prospect, Rolling Meadows, and Prospect Heights.
On October 4, 2017, Harris announced his retirement from the Illinois House citing frustration from the Illinois Budget Impasse. He will be succeeded by Mark Walker, who he unseated eight years earlier.
- "Appointment of David Harris as a Member of the Intergovernmental Advisory Council on Education". American Presidency Project. University of California at Santa Barbara.
- Madigan, Michael; Durkin, Jim (November 29, 2018). "House Resolution 1351: Congratulations David Harris" (PDF). Illinois General Assembly. Retrieved December 30, 2018.
- "Major General David C. Harris". National Guard Bureau. January 1, 2003.
- Bergen, Kathy (December 4, 2011). "Rep. David Harris has financial interest in CME". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved December 29, 2018.
- "Governor Appoints Colonel David Harris As Adjutant General". Springfield, Illinois: Office of the Governor of Illinois. July 9, 1999. Retrieved December 29, 2018.
- Clubb, Shawn (May 29, 2003). "Gillespie resident named governor's adjutant general". The Telegraph. Retrieved December 29, 2018.
- Schaller, Robert. "The 'Cutback Amendment' and diversity in the House". IllinoisIssues. Sangamon State University. pp. 9–10. ISSN 0738-9663.
- Gherardini, Caroline (ed.). "Board of Elections announces the newest legislative candidates". Illinois Issues. Sangamon State University. pp. 34–35. ISSN 0738-9663.
- Robb, Tom (April 22, 2015). "Long Time Elk Grove Township Democratic Committeeman Joan Brennan Dies". Journal & Topics. Retrieved December 30, 2018.
- 'Illinois Blue Book 1989-1990, 'Representative Districts of Cook County, pg. 61
- Bodily, Amyllen L.; Klemens, Michael D. "Election results: Good-bye status quo". Illinois Issues. Sangamon State University. pp. 8–10. ISSN 0738-9663.
- Pollock, James. "New members of Illinois House: The issues they view as most important to constituents and state". Illinois Issues. Sangamon State University. p. 19. ISSN 0738-9663.
- Long, Jeff (October 22, 2008). "Krause retirement sets off heated race to succeed her". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved December 29, 2018.
- "David Harris" Archived June 9, 2013, at the Wayback Machine. 98th Illinois General Assembly. Retrieved November 17, 2014.
- "PA 97-0006 Legislative District 27" (PDF). 2011-05-18. Retrieved 2015-11-29.
- Lester, Kerry (October 4, 2017). "David Harris won't seek re-election, says Illinois GOP is at war with itself". Daily Herald. Retrieved October 4, 2017.
- Barlow, Sarah E., ed. (November 15, 2018). "Biographies of New House Members" (PDF). First Reading. Illinois Legislative Research Unit. pp. 2–8. Retrieved December 12, 2018.
- Riopell, Mike (December 27, 2018). "Democratic Gov.-elect J.B. Pritzker picks outgoing Republican lawmaker to lead Illinois Department of Revenue". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved December 28, 2018.
- Representative David Harris (R) at the Illinois General Assembly
- By session: , 97th
- State Representative David Harris constituency site
- David Harris for State Representative campaign site
- Profile at Vote Smart
- Profile at Ballotpedia
- Profile at OpenStates.org
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