It is with great sadness that we report the passing of retired Sunrise City Commissioner Irwin Harlem
. Commissioner Harlem was appointed to office in March 1993, and earned re-election through March 2007.
Throughout his tenure, Commissioner Harlem was a champion of public safety, recreation programs, and smart development. He served on the Board of Directors of the Broward Metropolitan Planning Organization and the Broward League of Cities. Commissioner Harlem was also appointed to the National League of Cities’ Public Safety and Crime Prevention Committee, and the Florida League of Cities’ Criminal Justice Committee and Ethics Commission. In addition, Commissioner Harlem served on the Broward County Land Use Planning Board.
Prior to his appointment to the Sunrise City Commission, Commissioner Harlem spent 10 years on the City’s Planning & Zoning Board, serving three years as Chairman. He also served as Vice Chairman of the City’s Economic Development Board, and was an inaugural member of the City’s Small Business Advisory Board.
Commissioner Harlem was a resident of Sunrise for more than 40 years. He owned Village Hardware on Sunset Strip and served on the Board of Directors of the Greater Sunrise Chamber of Commerce. He was also an active member of the Sunrise Regular Democratic Club, the West Broward Democratic Club, and the Sunrise Jewish Center Men’s Club.
Commissioner Harlem gave nearly 40 years of service to our community, and is warmly remembered by residents, business owners, and City staff for his leadership, hard work, and dedication. In honor of Commissioner Harlem’s 90th birthday, the Sunrise City Commission proclaimed September 17, 2017, as Irwin Harlem Day
in the City of Sunrise.
Commissioner Harlem was a proud Veteran who served in the Merchant Marine and in the Army Corps of Engineers. He is survived by his wife of nearly 72 years, Rita; their two daughters, Cheryl and Debbie; five grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.