A biographical statement was provided by each finalist and is used verbatim on this page.

Watch the Round 1 school board interview of James Harris

James Harris, superintendent, Daniel Boone Area School District, Pennsylvania, PA

James Philip Harris Jr was born in Camden, New Jersey on May 27, 1969. After high school graduation, James joined the Army, where he served as a Military Policeman for 6 years and after an honorable discharge attended and graduated from Seton Hall University in 1994 with a degree in Behavioral Science. For several years, James worked as an Investigator for the New Jersey Treasury Department where he was ranked within the top 5 investigators state wide in case closings. With a career change, James decided to pursue a career path less hazardous and joined Coca-Cola Bottling Corp in their Marketing Department where he helped modernize their “fact based” selling technique. While at Coca-Cola James decided to pursue graduate study in Business Management and Leadership and obtained a MBA from Rosemont College in Rosemont, Pennsylvania. James is now pursuing a Ph.D. degree in Organizational Leadership at Alvernia University. Deciding to move with the approval of his family West and relocated to Evansville, Indiana to help revitalize the marketing efforts of Bristol Myers and the Mead Johnson Enfamil brand of baby formula James realized that he wanted to make the change to public service.

James with the emphasis now on public service went on to become the Chief Operating Officer for the Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation the third largest school system in Indiana, Dayton City Schools in Dayton Ohio, Business Operations Manager for Breakthrough Charter Network, Cleveland Ohio. Worked in the New England area supporting school turnaround efforts with Project Grad USA and is now currently the School superintendent for the Daniel Boone Area School District in Pennsylvania. .

James has also been in the classroom and has been an adjunct instructor at the University of Evansville School of business and Holy Family University in Philadelphia part of their education department. James has spoken at numerous conferences on the topics of Corporate Ethics, Intellectual Property Licensing Agreements, and The role of Minorities in a Corporate Society and “What is Success in Corporate America”. James has been on various boards and committees, which include Penn State University (Berks campus) advisory board.

Complementary to the work being done with schools James has created four unique business three restaurants, (North Main St Annex Café, Taste a Wine and Dessert House and Serendipity Bistro) and one art gallery (Noaella) a mash of his children’s names Noah and Ella.