Ralph Mills

20th January 2017

Ralph Mills

Full Name: Ralph Brian Mills

Position: CEO of Paramount Advanced Technologies

Main Activity of the Company: System integration and mission systems in the defence, land, air, sea and security sectors

Date and Place of Birth: January 22, 1964, Chingola, Zambia

Education: Bachelor of Military Sciences, South African Military Academy; MBL, University of South Africa School of Business Leadership

First Job: Soldier in the South African Defence Force

Career History Prior to Current Position: A total of 14 years in the defence force and ten years each with Thales South Africa and Denel

Size of First Pay Packet: About R180

First Job with Present Group: COO of Paramount Advanced Technologies

Value of Assets under Your Control: Not stated

Number of People under Your Leadership: Nearly 300

Management Style: I have become more participative since my military days, but I will not shy away from being autocratic, if necessary

Personal Best Achievement: My son

Professional Best Achievement: As a soldier, qualifying as a paratrooper and a master gunner; as a civilian, establishing and leading the team that turned around what was a very difficult defence contract

Person Who Has Had the Biggest Influence on Your Life: Not stated

Person Who Has Had the Biggest Influence on Your Career: The exceptional commanders I served under during my military career

Person You Would Most Like to Meet: King Abdullah II of Jordan – a soldier and ruler who leads from the front

Businessperson Who Has Impressed You Most: Alec Erwin – his work ethic is unbelievable

Philosophy of Life: You can be a peacock today and a feather duster tomorrow; do not let rank, title, position or wealth influence what you really are – a human being, first and foremost

Biggest Ever Opportunity: Joining the Paramount group

Biggest Ever Disappointment: Not stated

Hope for the Future: World peace

Favourite Reading: I have read a lot – from both volumes of War and Peace, by Leo Tolstoy, to Louis L’Amour, but my favourite is the A Song of Fire and Ice series, by George Martin, which led to the Game of Thrones TV series

Favourite TV Programme: I do not watch much TV

Favourite Food/Drink: Just about anything

Favourite Music: I am a bit of a hippy at heart and take West African Djembe classes, so I tend towards native-origin music, aboriginal music, and so on

Favourite Sport: I have participated in about 12 sporting codes, but nothing really stands out as a favourite. I enjoy the camaraderie that comes with team sports and I tend to be a bit competitive at times – I was once sent off a volleyball court for aggressive play

Favourite Website: Probably 1x.com – it features the most stunning photography you will ever see

Hobbies: Many – fly-fishing, mountain biking, semiprofessional photography (I teach photography from time to time), knife making and metal work. I also play and restore West African Djembes and take part in adventure motorcycling

Car: Cars are just a means of transport to me – you will almost always find me on my bike, a BMW 1200 GS Adventure

Pets: Sarge – a very grumpy Shar Pei

Miscellaneous Dislikes: A lack of integrity and self-discipline

Favourite Other South African Company: Not stated

Favourite Foreign Company: Not stated

Married: To Joanne

Children: Nathan, 19

Clubs: Not stated