Bob Harris


Deafened in infancy, Robert Harris grew up in Milwaukee, where his family ran a lumberyard. His schooling was mostly mainstreamed; he was a fine high-school athlete. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Psychology at Lake Forest College (1970), and his M.A. (1973) and doctorate in Clinical Psychology with a specialty in Mental Health and Deafness (1976) at New York University. He initially worked as a clinical psychologist. After getting laid off, he began selling portable TTYs part-time in 1982, phased out his psychology practice, and formally incorporated Harris Communications, based in Eden Prairie, Minnesota, in 1985. In 1991, he began offering a one-stop catalogue. He’s a successful entrepreneur, running a Deaf-owned and Deaf-operated business, a prime mail-order/online source of telecommunications equipment, assistive devices, novelties, and ASL/Deaf Studies multimedia.

Photo courtesy of Bob Harris

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