School board members talk about their professional roles during career chat


Marshalltown School Board members Mike Miller, left, and Ross Harris talked about their careers at RACOM and Emerson/Fisher respectively as part of career chat at Lenihan Intermediate School on January 17.

Two Marshalltown School Board members gave students an inside glimpse to their professional lives during the latest Lenihan Intermediate School career chat held on January 17.

Mike Miller, president of RACOM, and Ross Harris, plant manager for Emerson/Fisher, presented to the group.

Miller, who has a finance degree from Iowa State University, runs RACOM, which is a Marshalltown-based integrator of technology for public safety communications.

“We help keep the public safe,” Miller said.

Miller is a 1986 Marshalltown High School graduate who has been involved in the community in several ways from serving on the YMCA-YWCA board to being a member of city council.

Harris, a self-proclaimed “adventure-seeker,” spent 8 years in the U.S. Army and loved jumping out of planes. His personality went well when Emerson/Fisher had him travelling throughout the world as part of its global business as a valve manufacturer. He said he loved learning about new cultures and trying new food.

Now he travels less in his role as plant manager, where he utilizes his background in logistics (also ISU graduate). Harris said his mother was mayor in the small Iowa town of Postville when he was growing up, so that instilled in him a passion to serve his community.

“I was always brought up that you’ve got to give back to the community,” Harris said.

Career chat is led by Lenihan Extended Learning Program teacher Vanessa Engel and regularly invites professionals in the community to talk to students.