Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

For This School Veteran, Retirement Is a Challenge; Steve Miller Helped Usher Clay Schools into the Computer Age

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

For This School Veteran, Retirement Is a Challenge; Steve Miller Helped Usher Clay Schools into the Computer Age

Article excerpt

Byline: BETH REESE CRAVEY

Steve Miller has had two careers in three Florida school districts, starting as a teacher and shifting into information services when he found himself in need of a challenge.

Almost 40 years later, after helping usher 34 Clay County schools into the computer network age, overseeing the arrival of more than 10,000 classroom computers and gently escorting the School Board toward an electronic agenda, Miller is ready for another challenge.

Retirement.

"Thirty-eight years is long enough," he said.

After Feb. 28, Miller's most pressing decision will be the next trip on a travel schedule for him and his wife, Julie, an Orange Park High guidance counselor who retires in June. They have a trip to Ireland planned this year, but want to see more of the United States as well.

Also, they have more Broadway musicals to see -- Miller's office walls are peppered with framed posters from such shows as 42nd Street and Mamma Mia, signed by the casts. And they plan to plant crape myrtle trees on their property in Keystone Heights and continue following the seasons of Miller's beloved Boston Red Sox.

As the sign on Miller's desk says, "Baseball is life. The rest is just details."

The Boston-born Miller moved to Florida with his family as a child and began his educational career as a teacher in Bradford County.

"I really loved teaching. I had great fun," he said.

But after 17 years in the classroom, he sought a new direction. Because he had been teaching math and computer classes, informational services seemed the next logical step. He had that second career for 10 years in Bradford County, then moved to St. Johns schools for three years, then on to Clay.

He misses teaching, but said he is gratified that what he does still helps students. In additional to maintaining computer networks, software and hardware in classrooms and district offices, his office keeps track of critical district data.

"I get to do neat things for the children. I'm a long way from the classroom, but everything I do impacts them," he said.

At 61, Miller leaves the legacy everyone seeks, to leave the place he occupied better than it was when he arrived. …

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