Archetypes: Tim Eby
A conversation with Tim Eby, general manager of St. Louis Public Radio and a 30-year broadcast veteran. Before coming to St. Louis in 2009 to helm KWMU, Eby spent five years as station manager of WOSU Public Media at Ohio State University and 21 years in Elkhart, IN, where he brought NPR programming to the South Bend area, his hometown. Now, Eby leads the 45-person KWMU staff in furthering its mission to be a media source that “opens minds and nourishes the spirit.” Spending time on the air, as well as out in the community, Eby is particularly passionate about St. Louis’ revitalization—including that of Grand Center, the home of KWMU’s new 27,000-square-foot facility.
What is your current frame of mind?
When and where are you happiest?
Anywhere it’s 75 degrees.
What is your favorite smell?
What is one word that describes you?
What did you eat for breakfast today?
Bacon and eggs, over-easy.
Which words or phrases do you most over-use?
“Authentic,” and “I’ll have a beer.”
What is your most marked characteristic?
Sense of humor—or lack thereof, as some people say.
What is your greatest weakness?
I occasionally put too much trust in people.
What trait do you most admire in others?
To speak briefly and intelligently without rambling.
Who or what is the greatest love of your life?
My wife, Kathi.
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
To smile more.
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
My three kids.
Which living person do you most admire?
Which historical figure do you most identify with?
If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it would be?
A major league baseball player.
What is your most treasured possession?
What is your greatest extravagance?
On what occasion do you lie?
Occasionally to my children, about certain things.
Who are your favorite writers?
I’m a huge fan of sports writer John Feinstein, Nick Hornby, and I love the “Harry Potter” books.
Which artist do you admire most?
What is your favorite hobby?
Exploring St. Louis.
Where would you like to live?
Two to three weeks in San Diego every year wouldn’t be bad.
Who are your heroes in real life?
Anyone who stands by his or her principles and is willing to take risks.
If you could have dinner with one person, dead or alive, who would it be?
What’s something interesting that you just learned?
That NFL Hall of Fame coach Vince Lombardi was a champion in support of gay athletes.
What is one thing you wish would happen?
That more of our elected leaders would show courage and conviction.
What is something you still want to learn?
How to make a souffle?.
What is one thing you want to do before you die?
Go to Hawaii and Europe with my wife.
If you could say something to your younger self, what would it be?
Spend less time in the office. And make more friends.
‘Archetypes’ are off-the-cuff interviews with St. Louis' most inspiring, well-known personalities based on the 19th century Parisian parlor game known as the Proust Questionnaire.
Photo credit: Wesley Law