Assemblyman Chris Friend represents the 124th Assembly District in the Southern Tier of New York State. His district includes the Town of Maine in Broome County; the City of Elmira; the towns of Ashland, Baldwin, Big Flats, Chemung, Elmira, Horseheads, Southport, and the villages of Elmira Heights, Horseheads, and Wellsburg in Chemung County; and all of Tioga County.
Friend serves as the ranking minority member on the Assembly Committee on Children and Families and the Committee on Local Governments. He is also a member of the Corporations, Authorities and Commissions; Aging; and Housing committees.
A native of Big Flats and a 1991 graduate of Horseheads High School, Friend completed a BS in Chemistry at the University of New Hampshire, before earning MS and Ph.D. degrees in Chemistry at the State University of New York at Buffalo. He was named a National Science Foundation IGERT Fellow, and has published more than 20 scientific papers and symposiums.
In 2004, he felt a strong urge to contribute to his local community and undertook public service on advisory boards and commissions in the Town of Big Flats. Two years later, he was elected to the Chemung County Legislature, where he served on the Aviation; Health and Human Services; Highway; and Rules committees.
Chris and his wife, Renée, met in ninth grade and have been together ever since. They attended college and graduate school together, during which time they got married. After the arrival of their first daughter, Chris and Renée were motivated to be closer to their families. They left Buffalo and returned to their roots, buying a house in Big Flats where they reside with their children – Brianna, Joshua, Ashley, and Elijah.