Michelle Riddell joined Educational Media Foundation in December 2009. She’s the Vice-President of Digital Communications and is a member of the ministry’s executive team. She oversees the teams that produce multi-media assets, manages all things digital (websites, apps, socials) and handles listener interactions. Under Michelle’s leadership, various initiatives are underway to further extend the digital reach of K-LOVE and Air1 brands.
Michelle received her Bachelor of Science degree in Decision and Information Sciences at Santa Clara University and a master’s degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Technology Innovation from the Graduate School of Management at University of California (Davis, California). Michelle is also an adjunct professor at William Jessup University’s School of Business and lives in Meadow Vista, California with her husband, Eric, where they enjoy numerous outdoor activities including hiking, backpacking, kayaking and whitewater rafting. Their daughter, Elli, is married to Nick Hoyt, and they live in Omaha, Nebraska.
Kathleen Cooke: Most of us live in a scheduled packed “busy” world today – never enough time. Your position must entail endless hours. What’s your secret to staying focused?
Michelle Riddell: I tend to beat the alarm clock’s buzzing with early morning brain activity. So, it is that my days flow one after the other with thoughts, goals and meaningful interactions. God has revealed to me that He is my partner. Where are you taking me, Father? Where are you leading me? My one and only true job is to stay connected to His calling from moment to moment. When I choose this path, I keep the large story the larger story. This allows God to manifest His greatness in my life.
Kathleen: Women today are ambitious. We want to be excellent not only with our careers but in our personal lives. When do you push and when do you back off?
Michelle: I review the situation with respect to my wiring as an achiever. I ask the Holy Spirit, “Is this something I choose into?” Talking with God keeps my ego consciousness balanced. I pursue a goal but not at the expense of my relationship with Christ. What if I get anxious? The world says that anxiety is something I manage. The Vine says that anxiety is a cue for checking in. I bring the Cross between me and anxiety, “Holy Spirit, what is going on? Please give me direction.” When I wait for the answer, I receive clarity and relief.
Kathleen: Waiting… it’s so hard to rest and push the constant throbbing noise away. What has God taught you about rest?
Michelle: By surrendering to rest, I submit myself to His sovereignty. I rest in the Lord daily for 10-30 minutes. Every week, I set aside 4-6 hours enjoying activities that bring me joy. Once a month, I take 8-12 hours to be with the Lord. Annually, I go on a soul retreat. How can all the things that need to be done get finished? What if I miss an opportunity? What about the project? God wants me to choose Him foremost before other duties. Resting is the daily practice of humility because I trust that He has my back.
Kathleen: What the one thing you’d tell women today about how to be a woman of influence?
Michelle: My influence is the greatest when I lead with love. Whether it is a business setting or a personal interaction, as long as I recall the agape love of Christ Jesus, those around me resonate more closely with the leadership I provide.