The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, which awards the national and regional Emmy Awards, established the Silver Circle to recognize and honor outstanding individuals who have devoted 25 years or more to the television industry and who have either made significant contributions to broadcasting or who have spent the formative years of their career in in the area. On Oct. 13, the 2013 Milwaukee Silver Circle honorees were presented the award, placing them among the most influential industry leaders in the market. Last week and this week, OnMilwaukee.com will profile this year's inductees.
It is rare when a person works in two different newsrooms in the same market. But anchor and reporter Mike Miller has the unique perspective of having worked at three stations: WITI-TV Ch. 6, WTMJ-TV Ch. 4 and WISN-TV Ch. 12.
Tim Cuprisin wrote about the accomplishment on OnMilwaukee.com when Miller retired in May 2010:
Miller's biggest Milwaukee TV achievement is the triple crown, anchoring at the market's big-three TV news operations.
"That is a fact, and I don't think that'll ever be done again. Well, I had to beat one no-compete clause to do it," Miller said.
Flash forward three and a half years later and Miller is doing what he set out to do when he signed off wrapping up a Sunday night newscast. I talked to him before he and his wife were setting out to host another travel trip.
"I’ve never been to Lake Tahoe before and San Francisco is always nice," he said, running through the scheduled stops. He told me he’s been to Norway and other places, which is fitting for the person reading the headlines from around the world while sitting in the anchor chair.
He’s also doing other voice over and TV work – if you are a Time Warner Cable customer, you may have seen Miller on the On Demand channels.
On Oct. 13, Miller was inducted into the Silver Circle for his work in the Milwaukee market that started in 1978.
"I said this that day, that I was looking at the people in the room and I’ve worked with all of them," Miller said.
Miller was referring to the people who were in his 2013 honoree class. But he’s worked with most of the people in the Silver Circle.
"Out of the 35 people, I’ve worked with 31," he said, only missing three who spent most of their careers in public television and Bunny Raasch, who was an anchor and news director at WISN. "A lot of good people there."
As for the Silver Circle itself, it is something he will cherish.
"I’ve won different awards … AP, UPI, Wisconsin Broadcasters Association," Miller said. "I always enjoyed the ones from the Milwaukee Press Club for TV news writing. That’s the one I’d always go for, for my writing."
Miller told me that he made the Milwaukee Press Club’s Media Hall of Fame. "That was huge," he said.
"I’ve been to other (Silver Circle) ceremonies, to support other people. I thought that I kind of wanted that," he said. "I never won an Emmy, which they usually award to the big stories, and I was always running around on the day-to-day stuff."
Miller told me that he jokingly offered to buy one off of colleague Joyce Garbaciak, who he worked with at WITI and WISN.
"This was a big, big deal for me, it was even better. I was nominated once for a series on immigration, but didn’t win it. But here, this Emmy was not for one story or one series … it was a lifetime achievement award," Miller said.
"This was very special to me."
Here is Mike Miller going down a hallway, getting into a van and getting on the scene in this wonderful news promo for WITI-TV, Ch. 6:
Media is bombarding us everywhere.
Instead of sheltering his brain from the onslaught, Steve embraces the news stories, entertainment, billboards, blogs, talk shows and everything in between.
The former writer, editor and producer in TV, radio, Web and newspapers, will be talking about what media does in our community and how it shapes who we are and what we do.