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Miller, Robert Graham (1910–2002)

by Peter Berg

On 8 May 2002 Robert Graham Miller passed away in Auckland. Robert was born in the UK on 8 March 1910 and graduated with a B Sc (Forestry) from Edinburgh University in 1931. While still a student he became a member of the Commonwealth Forestry Association, and held membership continuously from the time he joined in 1931 – a total of 71 years. At the time of his death he was the Association's longest serving member.

Robert also joined the NZIF in 1984 and remained a member until immediately prior to his death, suggesting modestly " I am now hospital bound and unable to be active in the Institute, I wish to resign my membership, which should save a small amount in Institute costs".

His enthusiasm for forestry and travel took him to many places and he will still have many friends and acquaintances residing in other parts of the world. From 1932-48 he worked as Assistant Conservator of Forests in what was then Northern Rhodesia, then from 1948-­54 he was Senior Assistant Conservator of Forests with the Forest Service in Uganda. In 1954 Robert returned to the UK to work for the Government as Assistant Director in charge of the Forestry and Land Section in the International Land Resources Division of the Overseas Development Department based in Surbiton. Overseas service again called and in 1965 he joined FAO as Forestry Officer, Trinidad and Tobago. Sadly in 1967 his wife passed away. In 1968 he travelled to Australia where he worked for CSIRO in Canberra in a technical capacity before joining Australia National University in 1975 as a lecturer in forest survey in the Forestry Department.

Robert joined the NZ Institute of Forestry when he arrived in New Zealand and was a member from 1984 to 2002, regularly attending forestry events and maintaining an active interest in the forestry sector. This interest also extended to attendance at farm forest1·y field days. He also became an interested member of the Humanists and Rationalists Association and regularly attended their events. Unfortunately Robert lost a leg about 18 months ago and this curtailed much of his activity, nevertheless his keen interest in forestry matters remained until his death. Members of both the NZIF and the CFA will extend their best wishes to Robert's family.

Citation details

Peter Berg, 'Miller, Robert Graham (1910–2002)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 9 August 2020.

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