B. Carroll Reece (December 22, 1889-March 19, 1961) was a U.S. Representative from Tennessee.
Reece was born on a farm near Butler, Tennessee. He attended Watauga Academy, Carson-Newman College, New York University, and the University of London. He then opened a successful law practice in Johnson City, and also served as a banker and publisher.
He was an assistant secretary and instructor at New York University in 1916 and 1917. During the First World War, he enlisted in May 1917 and served with the American Expeditionary Forces from October 1917 to July 1919; was decorated with the Distinguished Service Cross, Distinguished Service Medal, Purple Heart, and the French Croix de Guerre with Palm. He was director of the School of Business Administration of New York University in 1919 and 1920.
In 1920, Reece won the Republican nomination for Tennessee's 1st Congressional District, based in the Tri-Ciites region in the northeastern part of the state. This region was heavily Republican - in fact, Republicans had represented this district for all but four years since 1861, and was one of the few regions in the former Confederacy where Republicans won on a regular basis. He won handily in November and was reelected four more times before being defeated for renomination in 1930 by Oscar Lovette. However, he defeated Lovette in 1932 and returned to Congress, serving until 1947, when he stepped down to devote his full energies to serving as chairman of the Republican National Committee, a position he had held since 1946.
Reece served as a delegate to the Republican National Conventions in 1928, 1932, 1936, 1940, 1944, and 1948. He was a member of the Board of Regents of the Smithsonian Institution in 1945 and 1946.
Reece was the Republican nominee for an open Senate seat in 1948, but lost to Democratic Congressman Estes Kefauver. However, two years later he ran against the man who succeeded him in his old House seat, Dayton Phillips, and defeated him in the Republican primary. This all but assured him of a return to Congress in the heavily Republican district. He was reelected five more times. When the Republicans gained control of the House after the 1952 elections, Reece served as chairman of the Special Committee on Tax Exempt Foundations, losing this post after the Democrats regained control in 1954.
Reece died on March 19, 1961 in Bethesda, Maryland, just two months after being sworn in for his 18th term. He served in the House longer than anyone else in Tennessee history (though Jimmy Quillen, who eventually succeeded him as the 1st District's congressman, holds the record for the longest unbroken tenure in the House for a Tennessee congressman), and only Kenneth McKellar served in both houses longer. He was a rarity in politics at the time--a truly senior Republican congressman from a former Confederate state. Reece's wife, Louise, was appointed to serve the remainder of his unexpired term in Congress and both are buried at Monte Vista Memorial Park in Johnson City, Tennessee.