My mother's family home in Ireland
The Full Story
I am an award-winning investigative reporter, foreign correspondent, editor, publisher, award-winning screenwriter, indie movie producer, online entrepreneur, music producer and teacher.
I was born in Lexington, Ky., on Dec. 2, 1952. I
attended Cassidy Elementary, Morton Junior
High and Henry Clay High School.
I started my career as a magazine reporter in
Louisville, Ky., after graduating from the
University of Kentucky. In 1979 I joined The
Associated Press as a reporter in Louisville. I
worked as a copy editor on the Foreign Desk in
New York before being assigned to the Rome bureau in 1982.
As a foreign correspondent, I covered wars in Beirut, Chad and Eritrea as well as special assignments in Libya, Bulgaria, Tunis and India. I traveled with Pope John Paul II and covered such varied stories as the hijacking of the Achille Lauro, elections in Malta, Mafia busts and terrorist attacks around the Mediterranean.
In 1986, I briefly served as Rome bureau chief of the Wall Street Journal/Europe before returning to his hometown to work for the Lexington (Ky.) Herald-Leader.
In Lexington, I worked as an investigative reporter and state capital bureau chief. I was part of a team of reporters that wrote a series that helped trigger education reform in Kentucky. The series was a Pulitzer Prize finalist and won the 1990 public service award from the Society of Professional Journalists, top honors from Investigative Reporters and Editors and the $25,000 Selden Ring award.
I was the Herald-Leader’s city editor for more than four years before being named executive editor of the Centre Daily Times (State College, Pa.) in August 1996.
While I was in charge the paper was named one of 18 best designed newspapers in the world every year by the Society of News Design. It also was named best newspaper of its size in Pennsylvania for three years in a row by the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association.
In 1999, I was named executive editor of the Tallahassee Democrat (a Knight Ridder newspaper like the Herald-Leader and the Centre Daily Times.) I oversaw the paper’s coverage of the 2000 presidential election, including the chaotic 36-day-period of trying to determine who actually had won.
The day after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attack I drove to Washington, D.C., to help the Knight Ridder bureau establish its first night desk to coordinate all the company’s newspapers’ correspondents worldwide in coverage of the aftermath. My training on the AP foreign desk, and his time as a foreign correspondent, helped him immensely.
After three years in Tallahassee, I moved over to the business side and ran the circulation, production, human resources and advertising departments.
When Knight-Ridder traded papers with Gannett in 2005, I was named publisher of one of the newly acquired papers, The Olympian in Olympia, WA.
I completed Northwestern University’s Advanced Executive Program in 2005.
After McClatchy acquired Knight Ridder, I helped merge most of his paper’s operations with The Tacoma News-Tribune and then took early retirement in 2009.
I returned to Lexington where I achieved a life-long dream of writing screenplays and TV shows. My screenplay A SHIP THROUGH FIRE (the basis for my novel "The Hunt for the Peggy C" -- won second place out of nearly 1,100 entries in the Writers on the Storm contest in 2011. My TV show called “Wreckage” – which I wrote with brother Harry B. Miller III and John Harrison -- is about a joint NTSB/FBI task force that investigates the worst, most criminally suspect transportation accidents.
I also helped produce four independent feature films: BAND OF ROBBERS, executive producer; HITTING THE CYCLE with Bruce Dern, co-producer and location manager; ARMED RESPONSE executive producer; and GHOST IN THE FAMILY executive producer and transportation.
In September 2010, I was hired by Newspapers of New England to be publisher of the Concord (N.H.) Monitor where I has overseen double-digit profit growth (the first growth in seven years), the successful conversion of the paper’s website to a metered pay wall, and growth in Sunday circulation for the first time in years.
The Concord Monitor was named New England’s 2010 Newspaper of the Year for both daily and Sunday editions by the New England Newspaper & Press Association. It also won first place for general excellence and best website that year from the New Hampshire Press Association.
In 2012 I was honored to be elected to The Associated Press board of directors and to be selected as a juror for the Pulitzer Prizes for two years.
Perhaps my most exciting new venture is being an investor/partner/employee of an Internet startup called Friends2Follow, which helps media organizations profit from their advertisers’ social media. I joined the company in 2014 and have helped open doors at newspapers as well as develop a help center/knowledge base and business plan. We have more than 400 publications in five countries as customers with more on the way.
After retiring for the second time, I was named the University of Kentucky's first journalist in residence in February 2015. I also taught journalist at Transylvania University.
I also helped fund and produce an incredible Easter oratorio called “Thy Will Be Done” written by Angela Rice, a Lexington friend. It debuted in 2012 and has been performed annually in Kentucky. The highlight came in 2018 when it was performed by the National Chorale at Lincoln’s Center David Geffen Hall. It is available on iTunes and other streaming services.
My wife Margo, a former college English teacher, is an artist. Our daughter Allison is an actress who co-starred in the NBC TV series “Kings," Stephen Spielberg’s FOX TV series “Terra Nova,” and Matthew Perry “Go On” on NBC as well as SyFy’s “Incorporated.” She is currently starring in ABC’s “A Million Little Things.”
I am a second-degree Shao Lin black belt and enjoy tennis and cooking. In the past, I served on the boards of the Concord Boys and Girls Club and the Concord Chamber of Commerce. In Olympia he served as chairman of the United Way campaign in 2008 and on the boards of the Thurston County Chamber of Commerce, the Center for the Performing Arts, Puget Sound Community College Foundation and the Boys and Girls Club.