Roland Burris is the former Illinois Attorney General that Illinois Governor Rod R. Blagojevich has appointed to finish out Barack Obama’s Senate term. You can find his biography, photos and a video below.

Embattled Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich has announced that he is appointing former Illinois Attorney General Roland Burris to replace President-elect Barack Obama in the United States Senate. There is a great deal of controversy surrounding this appointment. With Blagojevich facing impeachment charges following apparently attempting to sale the Senate seat to the highest bidder, there is some question as to whether or not the Senate leadership will accept any appointment made by Blagojevich. On the other hand, if they don’t accept this nomination, they will have to face an election that could result in the democrats losing that seat to a Republican. In addition, Burris would be the only African-American in the Senate. Turning down his nomination would be politically difficult from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

Roland Burris Biography

Roland W. Burris was born on August 3, 1937 in Centralia, Illinois. He is 71-years-old. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from Southern Illinois University Carbondale. He then was an exchange student and studied International Law at the University of Hamburg in Germany. He earned his Juris Doctor degree from Howard University School of Law in 1963.

Burris became the first African-American National Bank Examiner for the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency for the U.S. Treasury Department. From 1964 to 1973, he worked at Continental Illinois National Bank and Trust Company (now Bank of America), serving as tax accountant, tax consultant, commercial banking officer, and vice-president. He headed a commercial group that covered government guaranteed loans and minority business banking. From 1973 to 1977, he was appointed by Illinois Governor Dan Walker as Director of the Department of Central Management Services. From January to October 1977 he was the National Director and Chief Operating Officer for Operation PUSH. He went into private law practice in October 1977 until January 1979. He again went into private law practice in June 1995.

Burris is said to have had political ambitions in Illinois politics and has held political office throughout his career. From 1979 until 1991, he held the elected office of Comptroller of Illinois. He was the first African American to be elected to any statewide off in Illinois. He unsuccessfully ran for Governor of Illinois twice and for Mayor of Chicago once. He also ran for the U.S. Senate in 1984 unsuccessfully.

Burris was Attorney General for the State of Illinois from 1991 until 1995. possible

Currently, Burris is serving as Manager/CEO of Burris & Lebed Consulting, LLC. It is a strategic consulting service concentrating in the areas of public relations, governmental representation, political strategies, and corporate strategies. He also serves as of counsel to the law firm of Gonzalez, Saggio and Harlan, L.L.C. His areas of legal concentration are business transactions, estate planning, wills, trusts, probate, and consumer affairs.

He serves on numerous boards and has memberships in numerous service organizations. He has received many awards including; 100 Most Influential Black Americans by Ebony Magazine (1979-1995), Ten Most Distinguished Alumni in the History of the University – Wall of Fame, Southern Illinois University Carbondale (1997), Distinguished Accomplishments in the Field of Law, National Bar Association (1993), One of the Top Three Government Financial Officers in the Nation, City and State Magazine (1989), Mackey Award, National Football League Players Association (1989) and Hall of Fame, Centralia, Illinois.

Burris is married to Berlean M. Burris, Ph.D. They are the parents of two adult children, Dr. Rolanda S. Burris, and Roland W. Burris II, Esq. He also has a grandson, Roland T. Burris.

Roland Burris – Video