Rich Moellers’ life of the party

By Morgan Zimmerman

Self-proclaimed “king of the dad joke,” Rich Moellers is the manager of local radio station KVOM and one of Morrilton’s biggest cheerleaders. To the unknowing bystander, he may not stand out as the life of the party. You won’t find him in the center of the room holding the attention of a crowd with an arsenal of boisterous stories — but if you keep looking, you will find him in that same room quietly observing, offering a supportive word or some comic relief, and brainstorming ways to make his community better.

After living in every corner of the state and then graduating from Arkansas State University in 1993, Rich landed in Morrilton when his roommate was offered a job at KVOM and turned it down, recommending that Rich be offered the position instead. He set about making a name for himself in the community and over the years has become the go-to master of ceremonies for many local events. He spends his free time serving on the Conway County Economic Development Corporation Board, the CHI St. Vincent Morrilton Hospital Board, and as a member of both the Morrilton Knights of Columbus and the Morrilton Rotary Club, among other things. 

Some might say Rich’s greatest attribute is his positive attitude. When asked, he said pointedly, “I don’t really have anything to be negative about.” There have been challenges in his life, like raising an autistic son, but he believes that fate landed his family in Morrilton where an organization like the Conway County Center for Exceptional Children and their ACTION Services day program exists — and where his son was able to thrive. He adds that having a sunny disposition means being able to work with everyone and every relationship brings some kind of value into your life.

When the pandemic hit, Rich was called on by his church community to bring life to the virtual party by providing music for the weekly pre-recorded mass at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Morrilton. A lifelong lover of music, and having worked in radio stations since he was 16 years old, Rich is a skilled musician and plays several instruments. Outside of church, you can find him producing videos for his “one man band.” He blends audio and video of himself playing all the instruments and performing the vocals on popular cover songs.  

When asked what he thinks makes someone the life of the party, Rich says a big personality is the ticket. He doesn’t consider himself to have a big personality, but he remembers his former boss and longtime mentor, Stan Willis, saying that, even though they worked at an itty-bitty radio station, they were still in “show business.” Stan said people listen to be entertained and when you’re in a public job you’re always “on.” Rich quotes Thomas Jefferson: “Nothing gives one person so great advantage over another, as to remain always cool and unruffled under all circumstances.” The way he keeps his cool is to tell a dad joke. He says, “I think humor is how reasonable people cope.”