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Maurice Miller Jr.

Wealth management adviser, MassMutual

Finishing near the top in a Stock Market Game competition in his college finance class, Maurice Miller Jr. learned a valuable lesson. “My classmate who won said he had played the game in high school; I’d never heard of it. That made me realize the world is just not fair,” said Miller, whose parents and neighbors worked hard, but knew little about how to build wealth.

Later that year, Miller attended a lecture given by a financial adviser. “He owned his own business and was rewarded for it, and I decided that’s what I wanted to do.”

After graduation, Miller turned down a national firm’s offer after being told he was expected to build a book by prospecting friends and family. Instead, he worked in a Cleveland bank’s back office and then in its Detroit branch as an adviser. He left in 2015, spent two years with a small RIA firm, and then started his own business, affiliating with MassMutual, where he has earned several distinctions.

A certified financial planner and an advocate for financial literacy, Miller has been a long-time participant in the Chicago Fed’s Money Smart Week educational effort and is the co-creator of a 10-week financial literacy program he presents to elementary school students.