Berlin Borough Mayor Rick Miller – in office since 2020 – will seek reelection in the upcoming 2024 mayoral election.
Prior to being mayor, Miller was a one-term borough councilman. The news of his reelection decision comes after a brief period when he said he would not run again but focus on his family, friends and a personal change he made in 2022.
That decision in turn was met with requests from those same friends and family to stay in the job.
Miller’s reversal came as the borough administration underwent changes in recent months that included the election of two new council members, Carlos Mascerenas and Millard Wilkinson. The latter is the former Berlin police chief; he was replaced by Lt. Michael Scheer.
“It was a tough (last) three years,” Miller said of the municipality’s COVID challenges.“I think I was a little frustrated not being able to get some of the things I wanted to get done … I felt like maybe it was time to step away for a breath of fresh air.”
Miller took to Facebook in a post – since removed – that revealed what he loved about the borough while noting it was time for a change. In the two months since, he’s discussed the issue with council, saying he would be remiss if he didn’t continue building on borough accomplishments.
“What changed (personally) was that after I made that announcement, I became overwhelmed with the amount of people who asked me to reconsider my decision …” Miller recalled.
“People tried to talk me into (another) run, telling me good things (about the borough),” he added. “My friends and family encouraged me to reconsider, too.”
All politicians at any level are aware of the stress of government jobs on families, something Miller assumed his own family had felt throughout his tenure as mayor. That changed with his relatives supporting reelection.
Miller also began a new job in October, changing careers from banking to technology. The job’s first months took some readjustment, he said, another factor that played into his initial decision not to run. But that has changed, too..
“I wanna give my all to the town,” Miller insisted. “So when I made that (Facebook) post it was in the middle of (those work adjustments). Things improved, he added, saying “the energy and enthusiasm of new council members really gave me that (push) to seek another term.”
Going forward, Miller said he doesn’t foresee making term commitments; those would depend on the borough’s success. He alluded to changes he’s seen in the town since his time in office and plans to continue in that direction.
“I didn’t pre-set my time as mayor, ” Miller acknowledged. “I think sometimes people stay too long (in office) and there is a balance between leveraging your experience and also preventing others from growing …
“Sometimes you have to step aside.”