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FairfaxSupervisors pay homage to civic, political leader Harris Miller

Supervisors pay homage to civic, political leader Harris Miller

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Longtime McLean resident Harris Miller, who worked on Capitol Hill, led trade associations and was involved heavily in Democratic politics, died Sept. 15 at age 71, Supervisor John Foust (D-Dranesville) noted at the Board of Supervisors’ Oct. 11 meeting.

“He had so many accomplishments in a career that was truly dedicated to serving others,” Foust said.

Harris Nathan Miller was born in Pittsburgh, went to the University of Pittsburgh and in 1972 was selected as its Man of the Year. He attended graduate school at Yale University.

In the Carter administration, Miller helped design the Senior Executive Service. He also worked on the Senate Judiciary Committee for U.S. Rep. Romano Mazzoli (D-Kentucky) and helped develop the Simpson-Mazzoli Act, which concerned U.S. immigration policy.


Miller led two trade associations, Foust said. At the Industry Technology Association of America, he fostered relationships between the federal government and tech companies in California’s Silicon Valley, he said.

Miller also coordinated the public-private response to the Y2K threat, which concerned possible computer problems that could have ensued when the date switched from 1999 to 2000.

More recently, Miller co-founded a campaign for free college tuition and served on the boards of Virginia Opera, National Philharmonic, the American Heart Association, George Washington University Heart and Vascular Institute, and Virginia Lottery Board.

Active in the Democratic Party, Miller sought the party’s nomination for the U.S. House of Representatives in 1984 and for U.S. Senate in 2006. Both bids were unsuccessful. He also chaired the Fairfax County Democratic Committee from 1986 to 1993.

“He was everywhere,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay (D). “As we knew, it would take an army of people to fill all the missing space that’s left with his passing.”

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