Harvard Republican Club



November 15, 2013

HRC Elects 125th Executive Board

Tonight, the Harvard Republican Club, the oldest College Republican organization in the nation, elected its 125th Executive Board.

The following members were elected to Board positions:

President: Devi Nair ’16

Vice President of Campaigns & Activism: 
Chuyue Zhou ’17

Vice President of Speakers & Political Discourse: Aaron Henricks ’16

Vice President of Social Events: Gavin Sullivan ’17

Treasurer: Zack Soule ’16

Secretary: Erin Shortell ’17

Membership & Publicity Director: Victor Kamenker ’17

Per the guidelines established by the HRC Constitution, the new Executive Board will officially take power at 12:01am on Sunday, November 17, 2013.
 Congratulations to the new Executive Board!

Click here to email HRC President Devi Nair ’16 with any questions about the Harvard Republican Club and to get involved.

You can sign up for our email list here so you don’t miss any events.

HRC General Board Meetings
Our regular meetings are held every other Tuesday at 8pm.  All are welcome!

Get Involved – Join an HRC Committee!
Become a bigger part of the Best Party on Campus by joining one of HRC’s five standing committees. Each committee is open to all HRC members, and leadership opportunities are available right away. To join the Campaigns and Activism Committee, contact Chuyue Zhou. To join the Speakers and Political Discourse Committee, contact Aaron Henricks. To join the Social Events Committee, contact Gavin Sullivan. To join the Finance Committee, contact Zack Soule. To join the Press Committee, contact Erin Shortell or Victor Kamenker.

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About Us

Join the Harvard Republican Club!

Whether you are in the Class of 2017 or a veteran from the Class of 2014, there is no more relevant club to join this year.

The Harvard Republican Club (HRC) believes in Reagan’s Big Tent Republicanism.  We are the home for students and faculty whose political views fall to the right of center.  Whether you’re a fiscal conservative, devoted libertarian, pro-life advocate, or believer in efficient limited government, we hope you’ll join us!

Founded in 1888, the HRC is the oldest College Republicans chapter in the country, and we are proud of our rich history of Republican advocacy.

The HRC exists to promote Republican principles, policies, and candidates on and around Harvard’s campus.  We do this in a multitude of ways:

  • Campaigning for local and national candidates in New England.
  • Hosting influential Republican speakers like Karl Rove, Newt Gingrich, Peggy Noonan, Michael Steele, and more.
  • Driving political discussion on campus through activism, editorials, debates, panels, blogging, and new media.
  • Socializing and networking with receptions, parties, mixers, and our annual Lincoln Day Dinner.
  • Traveling to regional and national conservative conferences.
  • Holding biweekly meetings to hear from speakers and debate the issues of the day.

While we strive to be the face of the Party on Harvard’s campus today, we also seek to mold a Republican Party of the future that is strong, relevant, and effective.

Click here to sign up for our email list to hear about upcoming events.

Click here to download a copy of the HRC Constitution


Devi Nair ’16

Vice President of Campaigns and Activism
Chuyue Zhou ’17

Vice President of Speakers and Political Discourse
Aaron Henricks ’16

Vice President of Social Events
Gavin Sullivan ’17

Zack Soule ’16

Erin Shortell ’17

Membership and Publicity Director
Victor Kamenker ’17

Club History

The Harvard Republican Club, the oldest college Republican club in the nation, was established in 1888 to counter the recently formed Harvard Tariff Reform Association. Espousing the free trade rhetoric of Democratic presidential candidate Grover Cleveland, the tariff reform association projected the deceptive impression that free traders dominated Harvard. This misleading image piqued Republicans, who retained a plurality of support among Harvard students. To proclaim Harvard’s true political disposition, 817 students formed the Harvard Republican Club. The members, who included 3 Harvard Law Review editors, the managing editor of the Harvard Crimson, the president of the Harvard Art Club, and the treasurer of the Hasty Pudding, characterized themselves as “faithful students, with a special interest in economic and historic subjects.” They resolved to constitute a “formidable phalanx” and warned their free trade adversaries to “gird yourselves with the strongest armor that your stronghold afford you!”

From the outset, the Harvard Republican Club received the backing of prominent figures in the Republican establishment. Theodore Roosevelt, Class of 1880, lauded the club for “keeping Harvard where she belongs.” Congressman Henry Cabot Lodge, Senator George Hoar, and Governors George Robinson and John Long publicly avowed their support of the Harvard Republican Club at its first general meeting. The meeting, held on November 2, 1888 at the Tremont Temple in Boston, was declared by the Boston newspapers to be one of the largest political gatherings in Massachusetts history, with over 4,500 people in attendance.

The club maintained a conspicuous public presence. It celebrated the election of Benjamin Harrison to the presidency in 1888 by donning caps and gowns and proceeding through Harvard Square. When the club repeated this ritual in 1900 on behalf of William McKinley and his vice president, Theodore Roosevelt, one participant was Theodore Roosevelt’s distant cousin and Harvard Republican Club member, Franklin Roosevelt.

Refashioned as the Harvard Young Republican Club and dubbed the “West Point of Republican Politics” by 1948 president William Rusher, later publisher of the National Review, the club carried on its mission to communicate that “There are some Republicans at Harvard.” This objective became all the more imperative when John Kennedy’s election to the presidency and his appointment of numerous Harvard graduates to cabinet posts buttressed the image of a liberal university. To challenge the depiction of Harvard as a Democratic stronghold, 1962 club president Peter Wallison led a delegation of members to Washington, where they spoke at a press conference hosted by GOP Senator Kenneth Keating.

The fateful 1964 primary struggle between Nelson Rockefeller and Barry Goldwater engendered a fierce divide in the club. As both camps tapped supporters, membership swelled to a record 400. Though the club splintered into two separate groups, the Harvard Republican Club and the Harvard Radcliffe Republican Association, in the 1980s, it reunited in 1998 and now boasts a membership of over 800.

- Keith MacLeod, HRC Historian (’03-’04)

For a more extensive history of the Harvard Republican Club, click here.

Publications & Press

HRC Weekly

The HRC Weekly is published every Sunday night during the school year and includes a list of current HRC happenings and announcements, plus related notices from other organizations. Over a thousand students, faculty members, alumni and well-wishers are on this list, which is one of Harvard’s largest. Click here to sign up to receive HRC Weekly.

HRC Alumni Newsletter

The Harvard Republican Alumni Network consists of Republican alums of Harvard College and Harvard graduate schools. It enables alums to network, communicate, and cooperate through a moderated networking list, Republican alumni publications, and social events. To apply for membership, please visit www.HRAN.org or email hran@hran.org with questions.

Press Inquiries

All press inquiries should be directed towards HRC President Devi Nair (dnair@college.harvard.edu).

Official club positions are determined by the GOP Platform and by the General Board as prescribed by our Constitution

Support the HRC/Alumni

Over the past 115 years, many a Harvard student has found the Republican Club a proverbial shelter from the storm. A group of like-minded individuals seeking to further the tenets of Republicanism and conservative ideology, we have become a fixture in Cambridge, exhorting debate, discussion, and dialogue with our liberal peers. Sometimes controversial, but always right, the Harvard Republican Club has grown to become one of the largest and most active groups on the Harvard campus.

As an HRC alum, you can help ensure that our legacy of advocacy and activism continues by sharing your experience and expertise with us. We hope you will take this opportunity to keep us informed of your latest activities so that we can keep you informed of ours. Click here to donate.