Miller leads Developing Alabama Youth program

Published 4:07 pm Monday, April 8, 2013

By BETH CHAPMAN / Community Columnist

The Developing Alabama Youth (DAY) Program recently moved to a new facility with the Alabaster YMCA.

The Developing Alabama Youth (DAY) Program started in 1982 to serve Shelby County students ages 13-18 who were considered at-risk for dropping out of school. It is a comprehensive day treatment center and is licensed by the Department of Youth Services. The program serves more than 100 students per year and provides direct services to students and their families.

Areas of focus include academic remediation, GED preparation, behavior modification, training in coping and stress management skills, training in goal development and problem solving, individual and group counseling and training in employability and life skills. The services a student receives are tailored to address the factors putting them at risk and are in accordance with their appropriate long term goals. Referrals to the program are made by the Shelby County School System, private schools, the Juvenile Court, DHR and the mental health center.

Kathy Miller is the leader of the program. She defines being a leader as having “the ability to influence others to work toward a common goal.” She adds that the best type of leadership is “team driven, not singular.”

The advice Miller gives her students is “keep learning, you never know it all . . .” She tells them to surround themselves with people they admire and want to learn from. She also tells them not to get discouraged when they make a mistake but to “get up, brush yourself off, keep smiling and keep going. Attitudes are what leaders are made of.”

Miller said leadership is important because she looks to a higher power to guide her and there are many talented, smart, giving people in our county and she would be foolish not to learn from them and accept their help when offered.

Miller is a member of Leadership Shelby County and the Alabaster-Pelham Rotary Club. She is married to Jim Miller, one of the assistant superintendents of education for the Shelby County School System. They live in Pelham and have three adult children.


Beth Chapman, Alabama’s secretary of state, is a Shelby County resident. You can reach her at