Richard Myhre – Client Services
What’s your most embarrassing song currently in your playlist?
A few songs stray into my playlist from a family member who digs the twing-twang of ol’ time bluegrass.
When I hear one of these tunes, I picture grim-faced Hillbillies with square haircuts hoisting washboards and jugs. Wearing string ties, they sing about prison blues and hound dogs.
I’d give you some song titles, but that’d be way too embarrassing.
Who is your favorite storyteller?
One of my favorite contemporary fiction writers is James Lee Burke. He created a whole series around a likeable Louisiana sheriff. This character is a recovering alcoholic with anger issues. He battles inner demons from the Vietnam War.
There are no superheroes in Burke’s novels. His protagonists are emotionally wounded and prone to self-destructive impulses. They’re repeat offenders in need of redemption. Like us real people.
Some of Burke’s characters remind me of the quirky eccentrics in Charles Dickens’ novels. I’ve often caught myself laughing out loud.
Most amazing encounter with someone in need?
In 2015, I traveled to Guatemala to produce a coffee table book with profiles of personal and community transformation. One story featured a young woman named Sara with three small children. Her husband was an abusive alcoholic. She sold Jello pudding cups for a living.
A long civil war in Guatemala had left many widows in her village. Sara organized some volunteers who started visiting these women, bringing baskets of food. They helped more than 100 widows. Sara’s life was more challenging than imaginable, yet she was bubbling with joy. That woman had so much happiness, you wanted to take a bottle of her home.
Why do you do what you do for i58:10 Media?
Bob Dylan had it right when he said, “You gotta serve somebody.”
I can’t imagine a group of people I would be more honored to serve than our nonprofit clients. They go to dark, desperate places and transform communities with clean water, sanitation and disease-curing medicines. They provide shelter for people who live in doorways. A path of recovery and restoration for addicts. Dignifying work for those with severe disabilities. And freedom for children sold to sex traffickers.
These people are heroes to me. Working on their behalf is inspiring and meaningful.
Describe your family?
Disfunctional at our worst; crazy-fun and inviting at our best.
What is a quote that has had the biggest impact on your life?
Tim Keller, a Presbyterian pastor in Manhattan, had a big influence in grounding my identity in God’s unearned approval vs. my performance.
A favorite quote along those lines is from the opening scene of the Terrence Malic film, The Tree of Life:
“The nuns taught us there are two ways through life: the way of nature and the way of grace. You have to choose which one you’ll follow.
"Grace doesn’t try to please itself. It accepts being slighted, forgotten, disliked. It accepts insults and injuries.
"Nature only wants to please itself and others to please it, too. It likes to Lord it over them, to have its own way. It finds reasons to be unhappy when all the world is shining around it and love is smiling through all things.
"They taught us that no one who loves the way of grace ever comes to a bad end."