James Harkness, a former Chief Counsel to Governor Donald DiFrancesco, has emerged as a serious candidate for Executive Director of the Senate Republican Office. The incoming Minority Leader, Thomas Kean, Jr., has decided to replace John Samerjan, and is now looking at Harkness and John Kingston, the Assembly Republican Research Director, as the most likely replacements.
The 53-year-old Harkness is a Statehouse veteran. He served as Deputy Executive Director of the Senate when DiFrancesco was Senate President, and as Chief Counsel in the Assembly Republican office. He is now a partner at Riker Danzig’s Trenton office.