The Virginia House of Delegates put forth Resolution H.R 306 introduced in Dr. Monroe Harris Jr.’s honor by Delegate Dawn M. Adams of the 68th District.
The resolution commends Harris’ outstanding service and commitment to bettering the city of Richmond. Harris was elected president of the Board of Trustees for the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts on July 1, 2018, and is the first African American to hold this position in the 82-year history of the institution. In addition to his work with VMFA, Harris is past president of the Board of the Virginia Repertory Theatre, board chair of the Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia and serves on the board of the American Civil War Museum. He has previously served as president of the Virginia Board of Dentistry and the Virginia Board of Medical Assistance and is a partner in the practice of Virginia Oral & Facial Surgery.
“The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and certainly the city of Richmond would not be the same without the talent and dedication of Dr. Harris,” said Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Director Alex Nyerges. “We are delighted to see him recognized for his efforts by Delegate Adams and the state legislature and are grateful for his forward-thinking vision and passion for his work at the museum.”
The resolution further acknowledges Harris’ contributions to Richmond and states “Harris has served as president of the Virginia Board of Dentistry, mentored and supported African American students pursuing careers in dentistry and oral surgery, and provided free care to individuals in need through the Crossover Clinic, the Fan Free Clinic, Donated Dental Services of Virginia, and Missions of Mercy. . . . In addition to his role as a respected physician and civic leader, Monroe Harris is a dedicated and loving husband to Dr. Jill Bussey Harris, father to son, Monroe E. Harris III, and daughter, Madison; he is also a friend, colleague and sports and music fan whose many contributions enrich the lives of those around him.”
“Each session, General Assembly members have an opportunity to recognize constituents who have made major contributions to our communities and the Commonwealth of Virginia,” said Adams. “I was honored to recognize Dr. Monroe Harris with this Commending Resolution for a lifetime of service through his work as a maxillofacial surgeon, president of the VMFA Board of Trustees, president of the Virginia Board of Dentistry, volunteering with multiple free clinics and an active board member for a variety of area civic associations, all of which have created a legacy toward a healthier, happier Virginia.”
In December, Harris was named one of the Richmond Times-Dispatch’s 2018 People of the Year, along with Marlene Paul and Joseph Seipel. This award recognized his ongoing commitment to the Richmond arts community.
“I am honored that Delegate Adams and her cosponsors thought of me for this resolution,” said Harris. “The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts is the premiere art and education institution in the Commonwealth. I am proud to be a part of an organization that touches so many people in such an impactful way.”
The full resolution is available to the public on Virginia’s Legislative Information System website: lis.virginia.gov.