FEATURED EMPLOYEE: You might say Brad Millis’s passion for natural resources is in his DNA. For starters, he’s a second-generation natural resources specialist. Brad’s mother went back to school in mid-life to pursue a career in Water Quality Management. Several of his uncles are farmers. Family dinner conversations can easily vacillate between politics and current events to tractors and cattle.
But before plants and soil … there was water. “I’ve had an interest in sailing ever since I was a little kid,” Brad said. “My mom got us a sailboat when I was eight years old and I caught on right away.”
His interest in sailing really flourished as a teenager. “My dad served in the Army and was stationed in the Panama Canal Zone at that time,” he said. “I lived with him during high school and sailed regularly. When I was 15 my grand plan was to get a boat and charter trips around the Bahamas.”
Brad’s sailing resume includes a roster of adventurous trips, time spent as an instructor and even a stint competing in single-handed races.
Just how ambitious were some of his nautical adventures? He once wiggled his way into the Officer’s Club in Fort Clayton, Panama and took a 40-foot sailboat out for a spin—a feat that illustrates both his sailing skill and charisma.
During those formidable adolescent years Brad learned a second language, Spanish and developed a real love for Latin America. Once his time in Panama ended he returned home to Indiana and enrolled at Purdue University to pursue a degree in Agronomy. “I took a pragmatic approach to my degree,” he said. “Agriculture is never going away. The study of soil and crops, plant management, it’s an applicable science.”
Then came time to put his enthusiasm for ecological restoration to work. “My mom actually picked up a flier for V3 Corporation while attending an industry conference,” he recalled.
Brad Millis walked into V3’s headquarters as an intern nearly 10 years ago today. “I was drawn to the work and opportunities available at V3,” he said. “I quickly figured out what was in front of me, an opportunity to work at a company like V3 is one you don’t let pass you by.”
Today, Brad serves as V3’s Field Operations Director. His responsibilities consist of two of his fondest interests; ecological restoration and operations management. Together with a skilled team of field ecologists, he works on a wide variety of projects that include reforestation, wetland planting, erosion control and invasive species management.
As for sailing? “I’ve been back to Panama several times over the years,” he admitted. “I still have a boat in southern Indiana and go out on the water occasionally. But most of my hobbies have taken a back-seat recently.”
And with good reason. These days Brad and his wife Tiziana are navigating new waters together: Parenthood. With a 15-month-old daughter and another baby girl due in October, life is certainly still full of adventure.