Durango pediatrician ‘outstanding’

SHAUN STANLEY/Durango Herald

Dr. Kelly Miller is known as “a wonderful physician and an advocate for her patients,” according to a fellow pediatrician. She was honored last month by the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation of Colorado.

By Dale Rodebaugh Herald staff writer

The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation of Colorado has recognized Dr. Kelly Miller, a founding member of Pediatric Partners of the Southwest, as an outstanding young professional.

Fifteen professionals, ages 25 to 45, Miller among them, were recognized Oct. 19 at the foundation’s inaugural Colorado’s Finest program. The event was held at The Studio Loft in downtown Denver.

The national Cystic Fibrosis Foundation has a similar recognition program of long standing.

“It’s an honor we give for contributions to business, philanthropy and community service,” Holly Bishop, the foundation’s director of development, said Tuesday by telephone from Denver.

“They are invaluable to making a difference in their profession, are an asset in their community and positively impact those around them,” Bishop said.

Miller is the only honoree from Southwest Colorado and the only medical professional. Others represented finance, communications, industry, business and education.

Each honoree pledged to raise $2,500 for the foundation.

Cystic fibrosis, an inherited disease, produces a mucous that obstructs the lungs and the digestive system. The United States has about 30,000 of the 70,000 people worldwide affected by cystic fibrosis.

Miller was nominated by Jennifer Heinicke, a hospitalist at Mercy Regional Medical Center who has an 8-year-old daughter with cystic fibrosis.

“Kelly is an outstanding physician and an outstanding leader,” Heinicke said. “She’s involved in many community activities, including the Courage Classic.”

The Courage Classic, which marked its 23rd outing in July, is a three-day ride of about 155 miles through the mountains around Vail to raise money for The Children’s Hospital in Denver.

Miller is the organizer and team captain of Durango Derailers, a bicycle club that participated this summer for the fifth time in the annual Courage Classic.

“Our membership increased from 17 in 2011 to 80 this year,” Miller said Tuesday. “We raised $58,000 through pledges and reached an agreement (with the organizers) that $41,000 would be available for travel, food and lodging expenses for families from this area who have to travel to The Children’s Hospital.”

Families from La Plata, Montezuma and Archuleta counties, and Telluride and Farmington are eligible.

Miller is very deserving of the honor, said Dr. Cecile Fraley, also a founder of Pediatric Partners.

“She’s a wonderful physician and an advocate for her patients,” Fraley said. “She takes special-needs children to heart, and she’s involved in community service.”


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