Blog Archive

Monday, March 21, 2011

McGladrey Leader Returning to Vietnam

Written by, LoriAnn Boyer

Regional Recruitment Business Partner

Pasadena, CA

I recently had the pleasure of sitting down with Lloyd Miller, Regional Private Equity Practice Leader for McGladrey’s Western Region. Lloyd recently returned from an inspiring trip to Vietnam where he spent eight days with a missions team, called The Seven Day Heroes. Their purpose was to build wheelchairs for disabled children and adults. While in Vietnam, Lloyd’s team visited small villages outside of Ho Chi Minh City, Da Nang, and Hue. This type of trip is not a first for Lloyd. He has garnered many frequent flyers miles visiting several foreign countries where he has brought much needed outreach, medicine, supplies and hope to very impoverished communities in such desperate need. One look around Lloyd’s office and you’ll see the many pictures of children he’s worked with and, who in turn, have touched his heart through their spirit, perseverance and gratitude. Many of the children are orphans living in the direst of situations.

In my conversation with Lloyd, I was taken aback to learn that Vietnam lacks the ability to properly immunize against such illnesses as polio, chicken pox and tuberculosis. As such, children become extremely ill or disabled with these afflictions. Others are afflicted with birth defects due to the residual effects from the Agent Orange used during the Vietnam War. Many children are abandoned at the orphanages because their parents are unable to care for them.

Lloyd shared several heart-warming stories with me that, in essence, were becoming life changing for me just listening to him recall his experiences. I was intrigued to learn that Lloyd’s first trip to Vietnam was not one of choice, as he was there to fight in the war. Now, here he was, many years later, returning to Vietnam with a whole new mission in mind; to bring hope, supplies and compassion to the country’s disabled. The more I talked with Lloyd it became apparent that this trip to Vietnam was also a journey of personal healing.

Of the many stories Lloyd shared, one stood out the most for me. Lloyd spoke about a 9 year old boy named, Hwang. Hwang, sadly, lost one of his legs due to disease and is scheduled to have his other leg amputated. Like any young boy, Hwang enjoys getting out and playing with his friends, but did not have the ability to easily transport himself to meet up at the playground. Each day, Hwang would literally crawl, or be carried, to go be with his friends where they were playing. Hwang’s determination, despite the physical losses he’s suffered, is a clear indicator of his amazing spirit.

On the day Lloyd met Hwang, he and his team had just assembled Hwang’s wheelchair. When Lloyd picked up Hwang and placed him in the wheelchair, Hwang looked at it in astonishment and asked “Is this mine?” to which Lloyd answered “Yes, Hwang, this is all yours.” A huge smile stretched across Hwang face and he gave Lloyd a hearty high five. When Lloyd asked Hwang how having this wheelchair would change his life Hwang replied, “Now I can go play with my friends.” It’s amazing how an act of selflessness in building a child a wheelchair could afford him to do what every young child should have the opportunity to do… to go play, and hang out, with his friends.

In closing my interview with Lloyd I asked him what he came away from the experience learning. Lloyd replied, “It’s completely changed my life for the better.” He went on to explain that it reminded him once again, that it’s all about perspective and gratitude. We can get caught up in the frantic nature of our busy lives and forget that there’s a greater purpose at hand. Whether it’s reaching out to a needy community or being a kindly neighbor, it’s important to keep it all in perspective and being thankful for what you have. Plain and simple!

Whenever I speak with candidates after they’ve interviewed with McGladrey, I always ask them what they feel separates us from other firms they’ve spoken with. Nine times out of ten then say “The People.” If you’d like the opportunity to work alongside world-class people like Lloyd and several others at McGladrey who take the time to reach out to local and global communities and are leaders in our industry then check out our current openings at

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