Dr. Will Miller Profile

  • One of the country's leading experts on life balance, Dr. Miller gets to the societal root of stress, anxiety, and depression while providing viable solutions for reducing them.

  • Drawing from decades of practice as a psychotherapist, Dr. Miller's presentations combine real world experience with a refreshingly humorous delivery style that he honed during his 16 years as a stand-up comedian.

  • A respected strategic communication professor at Purdue University for over 20 years, Dr. Miller is the co-author of the international best-seller Refrigerator Rights: Creating Connections and Restoring Relationships.
  • A seasoned psychotherapist, respected faculty member at Purdue University, and well-traveled stand-up comedian, Dr. Will Miller’s approach to shaking off stress is second-to-none. The nationally recognized expert on modern society boosts organizational health and personal wellbeing by helping individuals strengthen their interpersonal relationships and rediscover a sense of community.

    An astute observer of human behavior, Dr. Miller introduced the concept of “Refrigeration rights” in his best-selling book of the same name. The premise of his work is that much of the stress, anxiety, and disconnect that exists in American culture today stems from our increasing individual isolation due to technology, a more mobile society, and accelerated pace of life. Dr. Miller advocates that we can reverse this profound problem of social emptiness by establishing meaningful relationships with friends and family, the litmus test for this being that we can trust these people so much that we’re okay with them entering our homes and helping themselves to whatever is in the refrigerator.

    Dr. Miller has served as a police chaplain and therapist in corporate settings for over 20 years. He has taught strategic communication courses at Purdue University since 1995 on both the graduate and undergraduate levels. Prior to his academic career he was a headliner comedian and on-air spokesman for Nick-at-Nite.

    • View Extended/Alternate Bio
        • Dr. Will Miller has earned the reputation as an extraordinary keynote speaker. He is a recognized expert in the area of interpersonal relationships, organizational health and workplace culture.

      A therapist and teacher at Purdue University, he lectures at the schools of Organizational Leadership, Management and Mass Communication on the social environment of the workplace and the impact on productivity.

      Dr. Miller is one of the country’s leading authorities on stress reduction and life balance. Your audience will take away a solid message about what gets in the way of living a life of personal and career well being. Unlike standard, simplistic motivational speeches that feel good in the moment, Will’s content is grounded in solid psychological and sociological science and research.

      Dr. Will Miller is uniquely qualified to impact your group. It’s no surprise with his four graduate degrees and years of experience as a therapist, counselor and author. If that were not enough, Will spent 16 years as a top headline comedian in New York City. He has toured the country extensively as an entertainer and has appeared on countless standup comedy programs. He was the on-air spokesman for the Nick-At-Nite television network and hosted the NBC Daytime program The Other Side .

      For the past 12 years Will has appeared before thousands of people at hundreds of events in the U.S. and Europe, offering a compelling and entertaining keynote for this country’s top corporations and national organizations. The response has been outstanding.

      Your group’s needs and meeting themes are important. Dr. Miller can easily tailor his presentation to meet these needs and empower those themes. In addition to his renowned keynote address, he excels at workshop and seminar settings as well. And with his extensive entertainment background Will is one of the best event hosts and emcees in the business, balancing spontaneous humor with respect for your organization.

      Bringing corporations and associations powerful keynote and seminar presentations that

          • Acknowledge today’s challenges at work and home
          • Mix engaging, real-life anecdotes with humor and hope
          • Open the path to productivity and balance in work and life
          • Energize audiences to move forward with zeal.


      Miller has inspired personal growth, happiness and fulfillment in crowds throughout North America, firing up audiences at IBM, Microsoft, BF Goodrich, Conseco Inc., Alliant Health System, Blue Cross & Blue Shield, United Way of America and dozens more.

      New Yorker turned Midwesterner

      Raised in New York City, Miller now lives in the nation’s heartland, giving him a wide view of North America’s people, culture and corporations.

      People Person

      A psychotherapist, comedian and popular cultural analyst, Miller is people-focused—listening, observing, connecting and communicating. His career has included posts at mental health and substance abuse recovery centers. He’s provided spiritual guidance at Universities, hospitals and to police. And he’s been an educator and a sought after lecturer.

      His Book Learning

      Miller holds four graduate degrees. He also holds a master’s in clinical social work from Columbia University, a master’s in divinity from Union Theological Seminar, and a master’s and doctorate in urban education from the University of Massachusetts. He had further training in Psychoanalysis and completed studies at the Rutgers School of Addiction Studies.

      His Own Pen to Paper

      Miller’s publications include:

          • Refrigerator Rights, Penguin Putnam, 2003
          • The Seven Temptations of American Popular Culture (Publication Fall, 2006)
          • Global Media Goes To War: the Role of News & Entertainment Media During the 2003 Iraq War (Chapter Contribution with Professor Glenn Sparks)
          • Why We Watch: Killing the Gilligan Within, Simon & Schuster, 1996
          • Contributions to many publications and news programs including Entertainment Weekly and Court TV.

      The Entertainment Side

      Dr. Will spent 16 years as a professional stand-up comedian, headlining across the country and appearing with Aretha Franklin and Natalie Cole. He spent five years as Nick-At-Nite’s television therapist in his Why We Watch segments. He’s also appeared on The Today Show, Good Morning America, Larry King and The O’Reilly Factor. He’s been profiled by NBC Dateline and People Magazine. And he’s currently the official psychotherapist for the nationally syndicated Bob & Tom radio show.

      We are a culture characterized by our anxiety, high expectations and stress. It seems that at every turn we face a new worry. Using his four graduate degrees, media savvy and life experiences, Dr. Will presents a new approach to finding balance and fulfilment in your life.

      His insight into the American psyche is astounding. With clarity and approachability, he weaves together a presentation that combines groundbreaking research with hilarious comedy.

    Dr. Will Miller Speaking Videos

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    Dr. Will Miller's Speech Descriptions

    Dr. Will Miller goes beyond “coping” with stress to deliver sustainable solutions that will enhance your wellbeing. The respected therapist tackles the greater societal trend of social isolation perpetuating the increasingly common feelings of anxiety and disconnect that many people face. His solutions are based in solid scientific research and a 35-year-long career helping people restore meaningful relationships to their lives. An experienced stage comedian, Dr. Miller uses plain English and down-to-earth humor to ensure his message goes straight to your heart and never over your head.

    Stress Rx: Finding Happiness Through Connections
    How many stress talks have you had for your people? Have they become repetitive for you and more focused on the dynamic qualities of the high priced speaker? Have they really made a measurable difference?

    One of the reasons so many stress talks sound the same is for the obvious reason that everyone is accessing the same scholarship and science. What they have in common is often a focus on alleviating stress for the individual by the individual. But as new research continues to affirm, coping with stress by improving the quality of your relationships is the real key. Dr. Miller’s presentation on stress also covers the latest research findings emphasizing that close relationships at work and at home are the variables that make the real impact.

    The Shifting Standards of Ethics
    Is there a universal sense of right and wrong built into every human being? This was certainly the view made popular through Western philosophy and practice. But in today’s global society, and with the shifting technological environment, ethical questions continue to confront us.

    Is our personal and corporate ethical sense based on what is best for the most people, victims aside? How do we ask leaders to make hard choices in international settings when confronted with such a broad understanding of what is ethical?

    Dr. Will Miller, graduate professor of Communication Ethics and Strategic Communication at Purdue University, understands how we guide professionals through the tricky waters of shifting norms. His scholarly background as a psychologist, theologian, and educator, combined with his 20 years as a professional stand-up comedian, make this a highly engaging, and content-rich presentation.

    Our Community: Finding Meaning in the Place We Call Home
    The challenges of living in the era of social isolation and media immersion, Dr. Will offers a rich level of research and understanding into the plight of institutions charged with helping people live a well-balanced and meaningful life.

    This presentation which combines scholarly insight with entertainment is ideal for civic gatherings seeking to cultivate community and family initiatives by nurturing meaningful relationships among populations filled with a variety of age, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds.

    Discover how to initiate volunteerism, engagement, and new collaborations in your city, town, and state. Help your people discover the joy of being an active part of a community rich in opportunity.

    Graduation Jolt: Now What?
    The academic industry faces unprecedented demands. As a recognized authority on the challenges of living in the era of social isolation and media immersion, Dr. Will offers a rich level of research and understanding into the plight of the educational institutes charged with preparing future generations to live a well-balanced and meaningful life.

    With five graduate degrees, Dr. Will shares the wisdom of his experience as a therapist and professor at Purdue University. And along with his two decades experience as a professional stand-up comedian, he offers a funny but incisive perspective to find real solutions for students and graduates and alleviate their worry about the future. Based on his book Graduation Jolt: How to Survive and Thrive after College Graduation, co-authored with Dr. Glenn Sparks (2014).

    What People are Saying about Seeing Dr. Speak

    Rating Entries

    Your message was totally perfect for our audience. Just having them flock you as you got off stage is a big deal for our normally conservative group. They instantly related and felt a connection to you! We laughed so hard, yet boy did you ever drive home a crucial message. Thank you for making me look good – I got kudos for hiring you.Throughout the next day we had factory tours. Your ears should have been ringing with all the buzz over you.Thank you again!”

    Karen McSherry, Director of Advertising, Harman Stove Company

    “As always it was a pleasure working with you. Your speech was truly one of the highlights of the program”

    Merrill Lynch Capital National Meeting

    “Thank you so much for being part of our conference at the Mirage Hotel in Las Vegas. It was a joy to meet you and to work with you. We were still hearing comments the next day about how much our group enjoyed listening to you. By now you have heard that we′ve hired you again for our Spring conference.”

    Franchise Times

    “Have I said thank you for saving – and MAKING the Symposium.”

    Branna Smith, Purdue University

    “Thanks so much for your fantastic presentation. We just enjoy you so much we wanted you to stay.”

    Interim Health Care

    “”Your presentation in San Antonio during our national sales meeting was fantastic. I received nothing but positive reviews about you from my group. “Awesome,””humorous,” excellent” and “knowledgeable” were just a few of the comments. As the keynote speaker closing out our first day, you provided exactly what we were looking for – an energetic and humorous yet meaningful and applicable presentation. It′s hard to keep 250 people engaged at the end of the day but you managed to do so. Thank you”

    Vicki L. Spurling, Senior Sales Consultant, Lincoln Financial Group

    “Thanks again for such a fantastic presentation at our state conference. You really set the tone for what became a great couple of days. The evaluations were all glowing in their praise of you!”

    Tim Slauter, President, Indiana Interscholastic Athletic Administrators′ Association

    “You entertained us and made us reflect on the important things in life.”

    Tennessee Farmers Insurance Companies

    “Will Miller′s style really hit home with our membership.”

    Michael Hayes, National Auto Auction Association

    “You were an incredible success. As anticipated, you were the main event.”

    Systems West

    “Outstanding! Entertaining!”

    Indiana United Way

    “Will was very humorous and had a special message to deliver at the same time.”

    B.F. Goodrich Aerospace

    “I felt wonderful after hearing your message today.”

    Purdue University Staff Conference

    “Rated by attendees as the best out of all presentations. You were a big hit.”


    “You made our evening a success.”

    Decatur Chamber of Commerce

    “You have an important message and you deliver it in a delightful manner.”

    Independence Missouri Chamber of Commerce

    “Will did an outstanding job for us. His message was perfect for our event and he had people laughing and enjoying themselves.”

    Crestar Mortgage

    “Wonderfully motivating and captivating.”

    Kiwanis International

    “Your humor and insight will continue to be an inspiration.”

    Conseco Inc

    “If you hold this letter up to your ear, you can hear the applause and laughter reverberating from the job you did for us at our kickoff last week.”

    United Way of Indiana

    “The combination of your humor and serious insights gave your message real impact.”

    Black and Veatch

    “Truly a big hit.”


    “A real crowd pleaser.”

    Blue Cross and Blue Shield

    “Will′s extensive educational background and ability to assimilate complex information were the foundation for his success with our group.”

    Alliant Health System

    “Dr. Will Miller′s performance was the highlight of our conference. Professionals like Will are a rare find.”

    AYCO Company

    “This was the first time in years where the audience didn′t jump up to leave, but had to be told that the party was over.”

    Rhode Island Bar Association

    “Wildly successful.”

    Women & Infants Rhode Island Hospital

    “A wonderful, witty and touching presentation. If your appearance was our great experiment, you were the eureka!”

    United Way of America

    “You helped us take a giant step forward in putting this company on the road to peak performance.”

    Cincinnati Bell Telephone

    “It just got better and better as you worked the crowd.”

    Publix Supermarkets Inc.

    Partial Client List:

    Airborne Express
    Alzheimer′s Association
    American Feed Industry Association
    American Resort Development
    Automatic Data Processing
    Blue Cross/Blue Shield Association
    Business Week
    Chamberlain Group
    Citibank-Smith Barney
    Clinical Lab Management
    Connecticut Hospital Association
    Cybertek Corporation
    Cather Company
    Crop Improvement Association
    Department of Veterans Affairs
    East Texas Medical Center
    EG&G, Inc.
    Farm Equipment Wholesalers Association
    Foundation for Medical Excellence
    General Merchandisers Distributors Council
    Georgia Judicial System Victims Assistance Program
    Greater St. Louis Automotive Association
    Health Midwest
    Heart of West Michigan United Way
    Hospice of Northwest Ohio
    Independent Bankers Association of New York
    Franchise Times Corporation
    Indianapolis Life
    Institute for International Research
    Institute of Fiduciary Education
    International Aero Engineers
    Kiwanis International
    Lawn and Garden Marketing Association
    Merrill Lynch
    National Association of Chain Drug Stores
    National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies
    Nebraska Bankers Association
    Pharmaceutical Corporation of America
    Phillips Petroleum Company
    Presbyterian College
    Publix Supermarkets, Inc.
    Pueblo Police Department
    Purdue University
    Family Resource Center
    Rhode Island CLU & CHFC RPR Pharmaceuticals
    Rocky Mountain Meeting Planners
    Sara Lee
    St. Elizabeth Nursing School
    Texas Apartment Association
    US Postal Service Law Department
    Wake Forest School of Medicine
    Watson Research Center
    Women′s Institute
    Young Presidents Organization

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