Jim Harker, F.R.I.C.S., was first elected as a Conservative County Councillor 1979.
Since then, he has held various positions on the County Council, including Chairman of Planning and Transportation and Chairman of Finance. He was Deputy Leader from 1989-93, Leader of the Opposition from 1993-2005 and is now Leader of the Council since 2005.
He is a chartered surveyor and retired as a Senior Partner of a large Midlands architectural and surveying practice in 2000. He is married to Jenny and they have five children, and so far, six grandchildren.
He was, for 10 years, the founder Chairman of the Princes Youth Trust in Northamptonshire and has a special interest in the economic development of the County, serving for six years as Chairman of the Northamptonshire Enterprise Ltd., and a board member of North Northamptonshire Development Company. He is a member of Northamptonshire Police Authority.
Nationally, he is Vice Chairman of the LGA Regeneration and Transportation Board and Chairman of the East Midlands Regional Planning, Housing and Transportation Board.