Jim Miller is the Director of Publications at Out & About Magazine, well as this week’s #PeopleOfWilmDE! Read his story below:
“I was born in Wilmington and raised in the Pike Creek/Hockessin area. After living away for a few years, I moved into the city in 1996 and have lived and worked here ever since.
I moved to Chicago for college, then lived in Jackson, WY, for a year after that. Jackson was the most beautiful place I’ve ever been, but also, in many ways, a tourist town. I was working three jobs just to make it work.
Some interesting facts about me are:
1) I ran for State Representative a few years back. Lost, but had a really wild learning experience. Met a lot of great people, too.
2) When I was a senior at Alexis I duPont High School, a bunch of my friends and I got cast as extras in Dead Poets Society. After filming our scenes, we’d hang out with about 100 other student-extras in the school auditorium at St. Andrew’s. The last day of shooting Robin Williams walks in, hops on stage, and does about 10 minutes of stand-up. He had the entire auditorium both spellbound and bursting out in laughter. It was unforgettable.
3) I play keyboards in a party band called Special Delivery and in an original rock act called Region. I absolutely love making music.
I am blessed to have a lot of longstanding relationships in this town. That fact means plenty to me. There also is the fact that Wilmington has a lot going for it: We have a fantastic Arts community; an array of excellent restaurants; and a strong finance industry.
Also, Delaware has the best beach scene in the Mid-Atlantic while maintaining one of the highest percentages of public land of any state on the East Coast. And we live close to all of it. The potential of our city is golden.
Some advice I’d like to share is support locally-owned businesses. ‘Remember the names of your favorite bartenders’ is also a good rule of thumb no matter where you live.
Wilmington is a small enough town where if you do enough things right, you truly can make a positive impact. I’m very fortunate to have had the opportunity at Out & About to work with others to do that. I’m proud to have been a part of a very dedicated staff that has helped keep Out & About relevant and prevalent for more than 30 years.
I’m also very proud to be a founding member of the Shine A Light concert series, which celebrates 10 years next March at The Queen. With 60+ musicians performing 40 songs, it’s a show like no other – and it raises money for vital youth music programs in our city. I absolutely love being part of that positive energy every year.
Some other organizations I have worked with include: Reed’s Refuge Center, Christian Salcedo Music Scholarship, Light Up The Queen Foundation, Ministry of Caring, Movies On Tap, 7th Ward Democratic Party, Union Park Gardens Neighborhood Association.
I am very happy seeing live music. Thankfully, the Wilmington music scene continues to rise.
Wilmington’s Arts organizations are innovating and collaborating now more than they have in at least 25 years. There’s been a very tangible spirit of ‘we are in this together’ that I hope continues because it has already made a noticeable difference.
The future of Wilmington is in the Arts. No one ever said, ‘Honey, hey, let’s visit that place where we send our credit card payments.’ However, people do go out of their way to visit music towns like Nashville, Austin and New Orleans. Just as they’ll fly across the country for a Broadway play. And we have all of those ingredients right here plus world-class museums. Let’s continue spreading the word and emphasizing the value of the Arts!”