BRISTOL BOROUGH >> Dave Harris, president of Harris Comfort, will be honored as Person of the year at the 2018 Bristol Fall Classic. Harris, president of Harris Comfort, was chosen by the Academic Oversight Committee of the Bristol Borough Learning Centers well-known as the AOC.
Harris is as popular, in his community and beyond, for his dedication to various charitable and educational organizations. Until 2017, the Bristol Borough native served as the mayor of Hulmeville Borough for more than two decades.
After graduating from Bristol High School in 1956, Harris attended Rider College (now Rider University), then went to work for the company started by his grandfather.
“I drove an oil truck. I started from the bottom and worked up,” said Harris, as he sat at his desk at the company’s Bristol location.
Over the years, and the generations --- Harris now works with his brother, Bruce, and sons, Douglas and Scott --- the company expanded its heating oil business to include installation of gas heating, air conditioning, and other services, including maintenance of energy systems. The company is located in Bristol Borough and Newtown serving customers on both sides of the Delaware River.
One of the reasons he was chosen was his support for his community locally and beyond, said Mary Gesualdi, President of the AOC.
That seems like an understatement. The list of groups and organizations of which he is a member or director is impressive: Retired director of First Federal/Penn Community Bank; 50-year member and past president of the Bristol Rotary; member of the Bucks County Emergency Planning Commission; former board member of the Washington Crossing Council of Boy Scouts; and member and past president of the Better Home Heat Council of the Delaware Valley and the Pennsylvania Petroleum Association.
Harris drove ambulances and fought fires. He is a life member and a 60-year active firefighter who served as assistant chief and financial secretary for the Goodwill Hose Company No. 3, and a 55-year member and former chief of the William Penn Fire Company.
Harris and his wife Jeanne just celebrated their 54th wedding anniversary. Along with Douglas and Scott, the couple has a third son, David.
For all that --- and that’s not all of his activities --- Harris seems reluctant to talk about himself.
He called his community service and his 24 years as mayor of Hulmeville “an honor.”
Of the recognition by the AOC, he kept his remarks simple. “I must have done something right that people think enough of me to bestow this honor,” he said.
Proceeds from the Bristol Borough Fall Classic help support the education programs offered, and partially funded grants, from the 21st Century Learning Centers, PA Department of Education programming. S-T-E-A-M (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics enrichment programs are offered after-school at three Learning Centers at key sites in Bristol Borough to promote academic excellence, provide opportunities for social, emotional and physical growth, and foster civic pride and engagement for students and their families.
Summer programs include a STREAM camp (Science, Recreation, Engineering, Art, and Math).
This year’s Bristol Fall Classic will be held Saturday, November 17, 2018 from 7-10 p.m. at the Bristol Borough Public Works Building located at 92 Maple Beach Road. Catering will be provided by the King George II Inn, Bristol Borough’s premier restaurant, overlooking the Delaware River and selected as “one of 10 Restaurants in Pennsylvania that you must try in 2018.”
Tickets are $50 per person and are available for purchase at the Bristol Borough Tax Office, Pond and Mulberry streets; Great IDs by Anne, Radcliffe and Mulberry streets; and Mignoni Jewelers, 200 Mill Street during normal business hours. Every ticket purchased is automatically entered into a $1,000 Raffle with the winning ticket selected at the Bristol Fall Classic.