Dan Miller drives off into the sunset

After 46 years at IU, the man who manages the data centers retires with dreams of grandkids, golf, and road trips

On September 30, decades of knowledge walked out the IU Data Center’s doors.

Dan Miller retired as data analysis leader for the world-class IU Bloomington and IUPUI data centers, which house the critical computing, networking, and storage equipment that serves all IU campuses. 

He’s the first to admit that his career path was a bit unexpected.

“I really didn’t think I’d be in IT,” he said. “It started way back at IUPUI when I was a student courier delivering punch cards all over campus. I think the opportunities the university gives people to have on-the-job training are fantastic. You know, data centers are kind of a niche. You can’t exactly go to school and get a degree in data centers.”

Through the years, he worked his way up from IUPUI data center manager to being named data center manager at what was then the IU Bloomington Wrubel Computing Center (WCC). He later became manager of data center operations for both the Bloomington and IUPUI buildings.

According to a 2017 staff profile in IT Connections, Miller counts himself among the lucky ones to have experienced two data center migrations during his career: the move from the university library server room to the new Information and Communications Technology Complex Data Center at IUPUI in 2004, and the IU Bloomington Data Center build in 2009 on the grounds near where the WCC used to be.

In fact, due to his extensive experience in the field, Miller was heavily involved in the pre-staging and planning of the server migrations to both new facilities. No small feat, considering the size of the projects.

“I’m really proud of how successful those two data center moves were,” he said. “They are definitely two highlights of my career here.”

Now that he’s retired, Miller has more time for his favorite pastime, golf, and time to spend with his three grandchildren and fourth on the way, all of whom live in the Irvington neighborhood of Indianapolis. (They call him Poppy.) He and his wife, Therese, who works at UITS as director of community engagement and interoperability, are definitely planning more babysitting gigs with the grandkids.

And now, they have a sweet new ride to take them there.

“I got myself a retirement gift,” Miller said with a sparkle in his eye. “It’s a 2003 Corvette convertible—dark cherry red. It’s something I’ve always wanted. It’s got leather seats, a Bose sound system, a 12 CD changer. . .this car was the car because it only had 36,000 miles and one owner.”

Have a great ride into retirement, Dan!