Richard Louis Miller is a Clinical Psychologist, founder of Wilbur Hot Springs Health Sanctuary, and broadcaster who hosts the Mind Body Health & Politics radio program, a radio talk show which airs on NPR affiliate KZYX&Z FM. The program is known for its wide ranging discussions on politics and health, the show’s format includes guest interviews, guest speakers, and listener call in.
Dr. Richard Miller is Founder & Chief Caretaker of Wilbur Hot Springs Health Sanctuary, established 1865, providing healing, prevention, and health maintenance.
Dr. Miller began the present Wilbur Hot Springs Sanctuary for the Self in 1972 combining the safety and security of the pristine Wilbur springs environment with a modern personal mind-body health philosophy emphasizing dignity and respect for all. He also revitalized the ancient healing method the Greeks called Balneology – the science of the therapeutic use of natural hot mineral waters.
As the Founder of the internationally acclaimed Cokenders Alcohol and Drug Program, Miller integrated his techniques, and philosophy, of humanistic psychology and psycho-physical fitness training with social model rehabilitation. Miller stated that chemical dependence is an opportunity for people disinterested in health, to learn about, and create, a healthy sustainable lifestyle. During the 1980s, he detoxified over 1,500 persons at Wilbur Hot Springs. Not one of these patients were medicated or hospitalized during their residential treatment. Dr. Miller believes the professionally designed program, the Wilbur ambiance and pristine environment, combined with the therapeutic medicinal qualities of the mineral hot springs were significant adjuncts to his 86% two-year success rate.
Dr. Miller’s innovative approaches to healing have been the subject of national television news reports (including segments on the news programs of Tom Brokaw, Dan Rather, David Brinkley and Phil Donahue), print media (Time, Newsweek, and US News & World Report), two film documentaries, the book Gestalting Addiction and his present book, Psychedelic Medicine. In order to share information with the general public, he co-authored a weekly news column in the San Francisco Chronicle, while co-hosting a weekly syndicated radio program.
Dr. Miller has presented his work at national conferences of the American Psychological Association, the American Academy of Psychotherapists and the White House Conference on Drugs.
He has spent 50 years studying, teaching, researching, administering and practicing psychology, health education, psychotherapy and Executive Consulting. His experiences include:
- Fellow: United States Public Health Service
- Faculty: University of Michigan and Stanford University
- Founding Board of Directors: California School of Professional Psychology
- Founding Board of Directors: Gestalt Institute of San Francisco
- Founder and director: Cokenders Alcohol and Drug Program
- Consulting psychologist: Haight Ashbury Medical Clinic
- Consultant: California Assembly
- Consultant: United States Department of Justice
- Advisor: President’s Commission on Mental Health
- Advisor: California Governor’s Council on Wellness and Physical Fitness
- Vice President: Parkside Medical Services Corporation
- Board of Directors: Redwood Practical Shooters
- 1st Vice President on the Board of the Mendocino Art Center
- National Board of Directors, Marijuana Policy Project (MPP)
- Board of Directors, Fort Bragg Senior Center
In 1990, while motorcycling, Dr Miller was hit by a recreational vehicle. In the resulting accident, the Winnebago ran over him crushing both of his legs. He kept himself alive using breathing stabilization techniques. In the emergency room he talked the attending physician out of amputating his legs which led to to a 15-hour surgery. This was the first of 6 surgeries. While in intensive care, Dr. Miller devised methods of coping with the psychological trauma, using visual imagery to aid the healing process. Given a prognosis of being paraplegic and using a wheelchair, he began rehabilitating himself by doing “wheel chair laps” around the hospital ward. Six months later he began walking on crutches, and he strapped them onto a motorcycle, drove back to the scene of his accident, and retraced the original accident multiple times in an attempt to remove the trauma from his mind, replacing it with “a perfect ride”.
Using special T bar crutches, he went on the complete 2 triathlons including swimming in San Francisco Bay. He used the same special crutches to run the 7 mile Golden Gate Bridge to Bay Bridge run in San Francisco with his former marathoning buddy Wayne Greene. Dr. Miller used this life changing event to deepen his understanding of himself and those suffering Post traumatic stress disorder. The implementation of those lessons soon followed, and he created a simple maxim, “Limits are self-imposed, and one needs to always be cautious of accepting the limitations (prognosis) imposed by others.”
Miller is, or has been, a Marathon runner, Triathlete, Endurance swimmer, Downhill skier, Motorcyclist, pilot, bridge/poker/chess player, pistol marksman, classic car collector.
When not at Wilbur Hot Springs, he lives on a small farm with the love of his life, Jolee, and about 20 animals, in Mendocino County on California’s north coast.