April 4, 2018

Former CCSU president Miller dies at 70

PHOTO | Contributed
PHOTO | Contributed
Former Central Connecticut State University president John W. Miller dies at 70.

Former Central Connecticut State University (CCSU) President John W. Miller has died, school officials said. He was 70.

Miller, who retired in 2016 after 11 years as CCSU's president, had relocated from Farmington to Florida to enjoy retirement with his family, the school said.

Miller was a long-time educator and advocate for underrepresented populations in higher education, the school said. As CCSU's 12th president, Miller is credited with assisting the school improve its graduation rate from 40 percent in 2005 to almost 58 percent in 2015.

CCSU also improved campus aesthetics during Miller's tenure, including new academic buildings, a residence hall, an engineering laboratory and athletic facilities, school officials said.

In 2007, Miller was one of the first to sign the American College and University Presidents' Climate commitment, which spearheaded the school's pledge in environmental causes.

CCSU's endowment also substantially increased during Miller's tenure, from $20 million in 2005 to $63 million in 2015. School officials have said Miller increased minority enrollment from 11 percent to 31 percent in that time, which coincided with him winning the 2005 Excellence in Diversity award from the Brothers of the Academy.

In an email to the school community, CCSU President Zulma R. Toro wrote that Miller's legacy is evident and will be remembered for years to come.

"We are greatly saddened to hear of President Miller's passing. Our hearts go out to his wife, Barbara, their three children, and their grandchildren," Toro said.

Before CCSU, Mill was chancellor at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater; dean of the College of Education at Florida State University; and a professor and administrator at Georgia Southern University and Wichita State University in Kansas.

Arrangements to honor Miller are pending, but the family is planning a memorial service on CCSU's campus this summer, the school said.

Founded in 1849, CCSU is the oldest publicly supported institution of higher education in Connecticut.

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