Lee County public servant and official John Andrew Harris is running for District 5 Lee County Commissioner. With over 30 years of community involvement on his resume, Harris currently serves as the chairman of political action for the NAACP of Alabama. His most recent work in that role involved partnering with Harvest Time Ministry with a development plan to create food banks and distribution centers in the Opelika and Roanoke areas.

“I want people to know I’m still a trailblazer,” Harris said. “A lot of times people give up on government because they don’t see government working for them.”

One of the first black elected officials in Opelika, Harris served on the Opelika City Council for eight years from 1986-94. Following that, Harris was then elected to the position of county commissioner, a role in which he served for over two decades. His philosophy, which has remained throughout his career, is simple: “John Harris Cares”. 

If elected as commissioner for District 5, Harris plans to focus on five areas:

– Infrastructure

– Education

– Transportation

– Voting rights

– Workforce and economic development.

Specifically, Harris wants to focus on educational programs, providing transportation resources, expanding on health care, mental health treatment centers and resources, food banks and distribution centers, voting rights and workforce development training and planning throughout District 5 communities.

“I have had lots of people call me and telling me the commission is not like we used to have,” Harris said. “I’m the type of person that, people call me, and I usually go out there and do things … I do more than just a commissioner. I go out and talk to the community, ride the roads, try to bond and form a relationship with them. We need to do more than that. I’m an innovative commissioner.”

A former Opelika grocery store owner of 15 years, Harris stressed how “elected officials need to be workers in the community.” In addition, Harris has worked with all of Lee County, including the smaller communities of Beulah, Beauregard, Smiths Station, Loachapoka, Notasulga, Salem, etc., to address community needs regarding recreation, roadways, waterworks and more. 

Harris has received numerous distinguished commendations and awards spanning across his political career, including but not limited to: The Barack Obama Lifetime Achievement Award (2016), the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Service Award (2018, Dream Organization) and the Champion of Change Political Action Award (2019).

Harris wanted to give a special thanks to his campaign’s marketing and PR company, The ID Consultant, LLC, his team and supporters. For inquiries about Harris’ campaign, email

The Democratic primary election for the Lee County Commission seat for District 5 is set for May 24. Harris is running against incumbent Richard LaGrand, Sr.