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Saturday, Oct 1, 2022

Executive Profile: Bruce Mills


Name: L. Bruce Mills Jr.

Company: San Diego Private Bank.

Titles: President and chief operating officer.

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No. of employees: 20.

Year founded: 2006.

Education: M.B.A. in finance, Cal State San Bernardino, 1984.

Birthplace: Riverside.

Age: 54.

Current residence: La Costa.

Family: Spouse, Carlene Mills; son, Jonathan Mills; daughter-in-law, Lisa Mills; and three


L. Bruce Mills Jr. is the president and chief operating officer of San Diego Private Bank, a community bank with headquarters in La Jolla. The bank provides services to individuals with complex financial service needs, including their personal, business, investment and nonprofit activities, through a quality private banking relationship which delivers customized financial solutions.


Essential business philosophy: Stay energetic; be competitive; and stay focused.

Best way to keep a competitive edge: Understand and learn about the challenges facing your industry and business, both internal and external.

Guiding principles: Being true to oneself and the people you deal with, and always being fair.

Yardsticks of success: Being respected by your peers.

Goals yet to be achieved: Creating positive returns in adverse environments.


Best business decision: Starting a community bank.

Worst business decision: Not anticipating the severity and length of the recent downturn in the economy.

Toughest business decision: Downsizing in difficult economic times.

Mentor: My father is my mentor, guide and friend. While not being seen as a giant of industry or business, he taught me that success is found in hard work, living within your means and the way we treat the people around us, which results in personal and financial success.

Words that describe you: Goal-oriented.


What you like best about your job: Working with various levels within the organization, from the bottom to the top.

What you like least about your job: Paperwork.

Pet peeves: People not meeting assigned deadlines.

Most important lesson learned: Organizing and planning combined with focus and hard work lead to the desired results.

Person most interested in meeting: I would love to have met Peter Drucker, a business leader, author, educator and consultant whose concepts shaped the teaching of business management in America.

Three greatest passions: Music performance, reading and learning.

First choice for a new career: Becoming a college professor.


Favorite quote: “Effective leadership is not about making speeches or being liked; leadership is defined by results not attributes” — Peter Drucker.

Favorite restaurant: Jake’s Del Mar.

Favorite place for business meetings: At the client’s office.

Favorite vacation spot: Hawaii.

Favorite way to spend time: Playing my music.


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