Where Justice Soars

By D.A. Barsotti

United States Air Force Captain Douglas M. Miller '96 stood fuming in the courtroom as he learned that a piece of evidence could not be introduced. It was an oversight: Miller had misinterpreted a motion, a point of law, and had not been able to secure the expert witness he needed to validate the evidence.

Then Miller learned that the defense counsel would withhold the defendant's plea until arguments had been heard, so as not to tip his hand. A good strategy, Miller knew; one that could put his first case as an officer on the staff of the Judge Advocate General (JAG) in jeopardy. He returned to his office to prepare his closing argument, knowing that he had to draw on all his resources. He was determined to win his case, not to notch his first victory on his belt but to ensure justice. For Capt. Miller's first case involved a victim.

The quest for justice at Barksdale Air Force Base in Bossier City, Louisiana, wasn't so different from the quest to serve underrepresented populations at Moravian College. "I am an advocate," Miller said, acknowledging that he began to take this role seriously during his junior year at Moravian. That was when he began to raise issues about diversity during an experimental program of campus-wide "town meetings." He joined Twenty-Six Points, the College's group of student ambassadors for admissions, and helped with diversity recruitment efforts. He worked with underprivileged youth in the community through the Children's Coalition of the College and through Lehigh University's ROTC Reach Out to Children program.

"I love and respect diversity, and I see what benefits it brings," Miller said. "I always felt like I had to speak out. Maybe that's why law attracted me. What I was doing at Moravian is the same thing I'm doing here."

Page 2 >>

USAF Photos: SSgt. Denise Rayder