Ralph Miller

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Ralph Ross Miller

Louisiana State Representative for District 56 (St. Charles Parish)
In office
1968–1980
Preceded by Joel T. Chaisson, I
Succeeded by Joel T. Chaisson, I
In office
1982–1992
Preceded by Joel T. Chaisson, I
Succeeded by Glenn Ansardi

Joel T. Chaisson, II


Born April 1934
Norco, St. Charles Parish
Louisiana, USA
Died March 30, 2017 (aged 82)
Political party Democrat (later Republican)
Spouse(s) Not first wife:

Sue Cutrer Miller (married 1989-2017, his death)

Children Ross A. Miller

Gregory A. Miller
Maria C. Miller
Maureen J. Miller Earle

Alma mater Destrehan High School

Louisiana State University
LSU Law Center

Occupation Attorney

Served in United States Army

Religion Roman Catholic

Ralph Ross Miller (April 1934 – March 30, 2017) was an American attorney from his native Norco, Louisiana, who served as a Democratic member of the Louisiana House of Representatives for District 56, which encompasses much of St. Charles Parish. He served twenty-two non-consecutive years from 1968 to 1980 and again from 1982 to 1992.[1] 

The gap in Miller's House service was caused by his unsuccessful candidacy for the Louisiana State Senate in 1979, when he was defeated in his Senate bid by another Democrat, Ronald  J. Landry, who served six terms from 1976 to 2000, having been unseated by the Democrat Joel Thomas Chaisson, II, a son of former Representative Joel Chaisson, I.[2]

Background

Miller graduated in 1952 from Destrehan High School in St. Charles Parish and served in the United States Army, dates unspecified. His son, later State Representative Gregory A. Miller of Destrehan, was born in 1962 in Lawton, Oklahoma, while Miller was stationed at Fort Sill. He obtained his undergraduate education from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge and his legal credentials from LSU's Paul M. Hebert Law Center.[3]

Career

Though Miller served in the House as a Democrat,[1] he was at the time of his death a registered Republican, like his son, Representative Gregory Miller.[4]

Representative Miller was the chairman of the House committees on the Administration of Criminal Justice and  Municipal, Parochial, and Cultural Affairs. He was a member of the Council of the Louisiana State Law Institute. Miller was one of the  "Young Turks," who in the 1970s brought forth legislative reforms, including accountability and independence from the governor. The acknowledged leader of the "Young Turks," Edgerton L. “Bubba” Henry, then of Jonesboro in Jackson Parish in north Louisiana and a former Speaker of the Louisiana House of Representatives who has practiced law in Baton Rouge for years, once told Gregory Miller that Ralph Miller, who maintained scores of legislative friendships over the years, “didn’t have a mean or ugly bone in his body.”[5]  Miller worked for construction in St. Charles Parish of the Hale Boggs Memorial Bridge in Luling, the East Bank (of the Mississippi River) Hurricane Levee, and the preservation of LaBranche Wetlands from commercial development. Larry Cochran, the president of the St. Charles Parish government said that Miller was “one of the most respected public servants in St. Charles Parish and we are grateful for his service.”[5]

After leaving the state House, Miller was a lobbyist for a quarter century. He was vice-president of state governmental relations for Freeport McMoRan, a mining company based in downtown Phoenix, Arizona, and then performed similar duties for Crescent Technologies, for whom he was still employed at the time of his death. He served on the boards of the trade association, the Louisiana Mid-Continent Oil and Gas Association, the Public Affairs Research Council, New Orleans Chamber of Commerce, Bureau of Government Research, the Council for a Better Louisiana, the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry, and the World Trade Center New Orleans.[3] His personal passion was historic preservation. As a founding member of the River Road Historic Society, he worked to restore Destrehan Plantation, an antebellum mansion built in 1790 in French Colonial style and modified in 1840 with Greek Revival architecture.  He was also active in the Norco Civic Association.[5]

Miller died in the spring of 2017 of a brief illness a few days before his 83rd birthday. He was survived by his wife, the former Sue Cutrer, whom he wed in 1989. Besides his son Gregory, his other children are Ross A. Miller, Maria C. Miller, and Maureen J. Miller Earle. He had four children, four grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. Services were held on April 4, 2017, at the Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church in Norco. The obituary does not specific a burial site.[3]

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Membership in the Louisiana House of Representatives, 1812-2020. Louisiana House of Representatives. Retrieved on April 8, 2017.
  2. Membership in the Louisiana Senate. Louisiana State Senate. Retrieved on April 8, 2017.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Ralph R. Miller. New Orleans Times-Picayune. Retrieved on April 2, 2017.
  4. Ralph Miller, April 1934; the list is maintained only with the names of living persons. Louisiana Secretary of State. Retrieved on April 3, 2017.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Anna Thibodeaux. Longtime state rep Ralph Miller remembered among legislative "Young Turks" passes away. St. Charles Herald Guide. Retrieved on April 7, 2017.