After 31 years of service to the City of Coppell, Jennifer Miller, Director of Finance announced her retirement effective February 4, 2022.
Miller earned a bachelor’s in accounting from the University of Texas at Arlington and began her professional career as a water and sewer inventory control clerk for the City of Mansfield. While there, she became a Certified Public Accountant and was mentored by then Finance Director Tommie Johnson. She credits Johnson’s encouragement for her passion and success in the field.
“Tommie took me under her wing and the next thing I knew, I said, ‘this is what I want to do,’” Miller said about choosing a career path. “She always told me I could do anything I wanted to do.”
She accepted a position as an accountant at the City of Coppell in 1991 when Town Center was surrounded by fields and occupied by not only administrative offices, but the police department and library as well. She watched it grow and change over the years, moving to the Assistant Director of Finance position in 1993 and becoming the Director of Finance in 1995. She later earned a master’s in finance from Dallas Baptist University and became a Certified Fraud Examiner, but what colleagues remember most about her time in Coppell was her dedication to the department and her employees.
During her tenure, the finance department obtained a AAA bond rating from both Standard and Poor’s, and Moody’s Investment Services. It also earned several prestigious awards including the Distinguished Budget Presentation Award and Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting from the Government Finance Officers Association for more than 30 consecutive years. She helped transform the finance department from one that was simply reporting to one that is approachable and partners with all other departments in the organization.
“When I think of Jennifer, coach, mentor and leader are the words that come to mind,” said Assistant Director of Finance and longtime co-worker, Kim Tiehen. “She set high standards and had high expectations, but she was always there to help make sure we achieved them. She has prepared us extensively for her departure creating a cohesive environment and encouraging us to lean on each other to continue serving the community at a high level. And, because of her leadership and foresight, we won’t skip a beat.”
For her retirement, Miller plans to go on an Alaskan cruise and hopes to travel more extensively including finishing her tour of the nation’s Presidential Libraries with only four to go. She also plans to spend more time with her family — husband, Robert, four daughters, Kelsey, Rachel, Kaitlyn and Christi, and her three grandchildren.
The City of Coppell will host a reception in honor of Miller at a later date. Stay tuned to coppelltx.gov for details.