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“The only way we can change what can happen is when you take positive action to make it so” with Darren Miller

I think it’s important for minorities who have made certain strides to go back to their roots and certain communities and let kids know that you can do something other than be a sports athlete. You should be striving to further your education and move forward and do other things. I think it’s important for […]


I think it’s important for minorities who have made certain strides to go back to their roots and certain communities and let kids know that you can do something other than be a sports athlete. You should be striving to further your education and move forward and do other things. I think it’s important for people who have made some money to set up scholarships to assist those people who do not have economic opportunities. Also, I think it’s important to provide practical experience for young students through internships so they can come into a corporate office and see something other than McDonald’s as work experience.


As a part of my series about “Black Men and Women of The C-Suite”, I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Darren Miller. He is originally from the UK, grew up in Katy, Texas. His Jamaican immigrant parents worked hard to put themselves through college and expected the same from their children. While in high school, one of Darren’s friend’s father, a lawyer, inspired him to go on to law school during a visit to his office. He was very impressed with the impact that lawyers were able to make on the world. The idea was planted and soon Darren was off to college. He ended up receiving a full ride to Texas A&M and earned his bachelor’s degree in Political Science. After college, Darren moved back to Houston to be with his family but also wanted to continue his education. He went on to St. Thomas University receiving an MBA with a finance concentration and then to law school at Texas Southern University. While in law school, Darren interned for a Mass Tort Attorney working on a case involving psychiatric fraud. The patients were abused mentally, physically, and emotionally, while their families paid the bill. The facility was doing this to countless families. Ultimately, the law firm was able to intervene and get justice for their clients. For Darren, this case confirmed that he had made the right choice to go into law and he knew he would start his own firm. 16 years later, D. Miller and Associates, PLLC, is still fighting for justice for people who have been hurt.


Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?

I was born originally in London England and grew up in Europe in the 70s. Back then, there were not many economic opportunities. Especially for African Americans. I watched a lot of American television and there were always attorneys on TV. At the age of 8, I knew I wanted to be a lawyer. When I moved to the United States at age 10, people asked me what I wanted to be, and I always knew I wanted to be an Attorney.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?

The most important case that I have worked on is without question the USC Sexual Assault Case that we are currently working. To find out that young ladies were being violated for over 20 years on in one of the most prestigious campuses in the country, and the university knew, and the administration knew and did nothing, it is just an absolute travesty of justice.

To be involved in this case, and to be a spokesman for these survivors and to created changes to fix this systematic problem is an honor. I’ve been involved in several big cases, but this is the most important.

Can you share three reasons with our readers about why it’s really important for a business to have a diverse executive team?

I’m learning right now first-hand behind the importance of having a diverse team. It is important to have women involved in the process, attorneys of all ethnicities, and people from different socioeconomic backgrounds. We are involved with people who have different issues all the time, and most of the time they feel more comfortable with people who they have something in common with. Maybe they share the same gender or the same background. If everyone looks and speaks the same, then it is, unfortunately, going to turn off the demographic which is in many occasions different from the same characteristics.

More broadly can you describe how this can have an effect on our culture?

Our culture, by and large, is becoming more diverse. There is more mixing of culture and races. I think it’s very important that the practice of law to catch up with that. Any time I walk into any events there are only a few people of color, and that is not reflective of society and where we are as a nation. So, I think it’s important for more minorities to be involved in the practice of law and furthering businesses.

Can you recommend three things the community/society/the industry can do help address the root of the diversity issues in executive leadership?

I think it’s important for minorities who have made certain strides to go back to their roots and certain communities and let kids know that you can do something other than be a sports athlete. You should be striving to further your education and move forward and do other things. I think it’s important for people who have made some money to set up scholarships to assist those people who do not have economic opportunities. Also, I think it’s important to provide practical experience for young students through internships so they can come into a corporate office and see something other than McDonald’s as work experience.

How do you define “Leadership”? Can you explain what you mean or give an example?

First and foremost, accepting responsibility when things do not go right. Showing people what it means to be a leader through morals, ethics and providing good direction. Showing humility by asking for help when you do not have the right answer.

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why? Please share a story or example for each.

1. Getting a law degree does not give you any inclination on how to run a business. Graduating and passing the BAR does not prepare you on how to manage accounts and handling money for your business. I wish someone would’ve told me that.

2. Get Your Money Right — If you are going to out there and start your own business, you have to figure out where that money is going to come from. How are you going to manage that money when clients need advances? How are you going to be prepared and lookout for the best interest of your clients?

3. Patience — You have to be patient and certainly not jump on the first offer that’s extended by some of these insurance companies. I’ve noticed that some of these insurance companies try to low ball you. They know that clients are desperate, and some lawyers do not want to file lawsuits. You must be ready to file lawsuits. You have to be ready to fight, you have to be ready to do what is necessary to be a fiduciary on behalf of your client, so the numbers and the outcomes turn out on the best interest of the clients

4. Integrity — Have integrity with your clients. Do not lie to them, do not cheat them, do not deceive them. I learned very early that if you make a mistake or do not do something that you said you were going to do, then own up to it. Take responsibility for it and own it. The client will respect you because of it, and you will keep yourself out of trouble by being honest and keep yourself in line with your oath of being an attorney.

5. Humility — Be humble with your clients. When I first got licensed, I noticed that when clients walked into the office. It was like you were going to see the king and they expected for clients to kiss the ring. It is not like that. You work for that person and you would not be in the position you are in without that client. You have to have respect for that client. You have to let them know that you work for them. Let them know that we are here to point them in the right direction and give them advice. Treat your clients the way you would treat your family members.

You are a person of enormous influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

A series on Talk 2 Me Tuesday about money and its proper priority in life. I would inspire young kids that money is just paper. Yes, it is important, but when you get that money you have the responsivity to share that money by helping other people. Quality of life is important, family is important.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

“The Best Apology is Changed Behavior”

Relevant to life: One of the things I despise is when someone continues with the same behavior, yet they expect a better result. The only way we can change what can happen is when you take positive action to make it so!

Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why?

LeBron James. I have followed him since he was in high school when he made some of the difficult decisions like going to college or going straight to the NBA. With having the early success, and then making some of the big mistakes like ‘The Decision’ and how he handled it afterward. Moving to Miami, and his charity work there, then moving back to Cleveland and bringing a championship home. Also, putting hundreds of kids through college. I don’t know if people really know the effect that he’s had in his community and the effect he’s had on his friends and the business that they have started, and to show other minorities that you can come out of nowhere and create businesses and enterprises. To now, moving from Cleveland to Los Angeles for not just for basketball, but to start production companies and entertainment companies and seeing those things grow. Quite frankly we have modeled some of the things we are doing by the innovations he has made. I would love to shake his hand and thank him for trailblazing the way for others like myself.

How can our readers follow you on social media?

You can follow me through the law firm’s social media accounts on through Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn!

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dmillerlaw/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/dmillerlaw/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxBPVJppYJ2VGUa5g3zQG3g?

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/d.-miller-&-associates-p.l.l.c.

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