Though Brad Miller has lived in large cities all over the country, a small town in northeast Indiana will always hold a special place in his heart. Born and raised in Kendallville, Miller made a name for himself and enjoyed a long career on the basketball court. The two-time NBA All-Star played for teams in Charlotte, Chicago, Sacramento, Houston and Indianapolis before retiring from the Minnesota Timberwolves in 2012. Since then, he’s embarked on several business ventures and now hosts the popular show “Country Boys Outdoors,” which airs on the Sportsman Channel.
Miller’s initial love of hunting and fishing began when he was a young boy. His match through the Big Brother Big Sisters organization, Dewy Forbes, introduced him to a variety of sports.
“My parents were divorced when I got into the program. Dewy would take me to the park to shoot baskets. Our relationship grew,” Miller recalls. “My mom wasn’t an outdoors person at all, so I would go to Dewy’s place on Big Long Lake and spend time there with him. It really fostered my love of the outdoors and the peacefulness of it.”
While his primary home is in California, Miller spends every summer on his property in Steuben County. He and his fiancée recently loaded up their RV, and they and their two dogs made the cross-country trip.
“Turkey season, deer season and of course summer are the times that you want to be in Indiana,” he says with a laugh. “Now I have over 600 acres on the east side of Clear Lake. I built it up over time; bought a few acres here and a few acres there. “Country Boys Outdoors” is all shot at the lodge on the property. We’ll also travel and go to places like Florida to do a spear fishing episode.”
Miller’s experience with Big Brothers Big Sisters was so profound that giving back to the program has become another passion of his. For the past two decades, he’s hosted an annual gala, auction and golf outing to benefit the program.
“We weren’t really getting a lot of national money in northeast Indiana, so I decided to start a fundraiser,” says Miller. “It’s really cool to know that every dollar stays here locally. I would have never guessed it would grow into this. Now our chapter has been noticed by Big Brothers Big Sisters of America and other BBBS agencies across the nation. It’s proven that if we raise the money, it will help the program and will help more kids find matches. We raised over $700,000 last year. The very first year we started this we raised about $100,000, and from there its kept growing. My new goal is to make a million this year. We have some different things in mind to try and potentially raise that money.”
In addition to the event, which will take place this August in Fort Wayne, Miller shares his love of the outdoors with Bigs and Littles enrolled in the program by hosting an overnight camp-out on his property each summer.
“This will be my third year hosting 15-20 kids. They set up their tents and explore the trails. A lot of kids from Fort Wayne don’t get to experience anything like that. We have hundreds of miles of four-wheeler trails on the property. It’s a place where they can fish, and catch bluegills and bass,” he says.
Miller says his commitment to Big Brothers Big Sisters will continue for the foreseeable future and beyond.
“The whole property is going to go to Big Brothers Big Sisters. It’s already in my will and trust. I’m excited to be able to gift that to them one day,” he says. “I’m trying to get it as nice as possible and use all of my hunting show resources to make it the best I can. Right now, I’m working to manage the deer population. My end goal for the property is for Big Brothers Big Sisters to use it to take someone outdoors to turkey hunt, squirrel hunt or deer hunt. It’s an honor to be able to leave that legacy.”
20th Annual Brad Miller Gala, Auction & Golf Outing Benefitting Big Brothers Big Sisters
Gala & Auction: Aug. 19, 2023,
Allen County War Memorial Coliseum
Classic Gold Golf Outing: Aug. 20, 2023,
Glendarin Hills Golf Club
Golf Outing: Aug. 21, 2023,
Noble Hawk Golf Links
For more information, please visit bbbsnei.org