Milliner & Associates receives American Staffing Association Care Award for work at Decatur Central High School


By Mark Ambrogi


For Rich Milliner, it was only fitting to give back.

His company, Milliner & Associates has been honored with a 2015 American Staffing Association Care Award for “Mentoring Today’s Youth into Tomorrow’s Leaders” by helping with the Jobs for America’s Graduates program for at-risk students. The ASA Care Awards honor corporate social responsibility.

“It’s easy to cut a check and just sponsor something,” said Milliner, a Zionsville resident. “We got more out of it by simply giving our time, our expertise and talents to let these individuals know there are people to assist them in making their lives better. For us, that was all the reward we needed.”

The Indianapolis-based company specializes in staffing and recruiting in accounting, finance, administration and human resources.

“Being involved in the JAG program has been extremely fulfilling for all of us,” Milliner said.


Nicole Bieker, Milliner & Associates vice president of operations, learned about the JAG program last year at Staffing World, the annual convention for the American Staffing Association.

Bieker explained the program to Milliner and they decided to launch it at the company.

“The state association is in a growth situation where we are trying to rebuild,” Bieker said. “Instead of trying to work with other firms, we tried to see what we could do here personally.”

Bieker saw a list of schools, and when they saw Decatur Central, it was a natural fit since it was Milliner’s alma mater. Milliner, 43, changed schools many times before coming to Decatur Central in the middle of his freshman year.

“I was the first kid to actually graduate from high school, let alone go to college in our family,” Milliner said.

Milliner said he was encouraged by one teacher who told him he had the opportunity to go to college and make more of himself if he applied himself. Milliner said if the JAG program was around when he was in high school, he could have been a candidate for it.

Seven staff members, five full-time members and two interns, participated in 19 activities with JAG (70 staff hours) from December 2014 to June 2015. It started with a mock-tail party.

“It was an opportunity for us to show them how to work a room, how to balance your drink in one hand, appetizer plate in another and grab for your business card and give a firm handshake,” Bieker said.

Mock interviews sessions were then developed. Bieker said JAG students will have four different mock interviews before they graduate.

On Nov. 12, Milliner will serve as guest speaker at the JAG initiation ceremony for the 2015-16 school year. Bieker said the mock interviews will start again in December. Milliner has made a three-year commitment to stay involved with Decatur Central’s JAG program.

ASA Care Award honorees were at honored at the ASA convention Oct. 27-29 at Nashville, Tenn.