New equarius president Mark Miller '88 has lots of Lute help
By Linda Elliott, special to Scene
Mark Miller '88 always enjoyed leadership and envisioned being president of a company, someday. He just didn't expect it to happen so soon.
Luther Carlson and Mark Miller (left) and Kevin Kelly (right) are all Lutes.
In October, the 33-year-old Miller took the helm of equarius, a systems integration consulting firm providing eBusiness solutions to organizations using Microsoft BackOffice technology. Equarius helps companies use software to extend their business to and through the Internet.
Headquartered in Bellevue, Wash., 40 percent of equarius' national client base comes from Northwest companies, such as Lightware, Visio, N2H2 and the Seahawks.
"My key function as leader of this organization is ensuring that our people are highly motivated and enjoying what they're working on. If that's happening, our clients will be well taken care of," said Miller, son of PLU Health Center Associate Director Ann Miller '86 and retired PLU economics professor Marlen Miller.
Considering the rate of technological change these days, Miller has his work cut out for him. He also has lots of Lute help. Kevin Kelly '90, is one of four co-founders of equarius, and the group's first hire was Ryker Labbee '96. Two years ago Miller came on as employee number 12, and equarius later added John Perry '91, Sam Lester '99 and Luther Carlson '87. Today, the company has 60 employees and this fall was ranked number 25 on the Puget Sound Business Journal's list of the Top 100 fastest growing privately held companies.
Miller also is surrounded by Lutes in his personal life. He is married to Connie (Eliason '85, '88 ) Miller, principal of Firgrove Elementary School in Puyallup. Connie is the daughter of recently retired admissions director Camille Eliason '59, '68 and her husband, Iver '55, '63.
The couple has two children and lives in Edgewood, Wash. The Millers spend time with Lute alums at Mountain View Lutheran Church and Mark still plays basketball regularly with several former Lute basketball players.