Tim Buller shies away from attention and spotlights. He would rather stand behind the light, than have it shine on him.
At one time that is what he wanted for a career — to be a sound technician. One of those guys no one pays attention to during a concert, even though everyone hears their work.
“I thought I would be a sound man and work in the production business,” Buller said. “That lifestyle really was not what I was looking for.”
That, however, didn't really pan out for him. After trying his hand at it in larger cities where markets were highly competitive, he settled with his wife in Newton. In many ways, he was returning to part of his roots. He and his wife are Bethel College graduates.
When they chose to return to Bethel, she took a position as a professor. He took a job in the information technology department.
Buller currently works in IT for a group of nursing homes, providing services to locations in South Hutchinson, Buhler, Hillsboro and Goessel.
“I keep every thing running,” Buller said. “I am into the infrastructure and the network.”
Buller is also a long-time volunteer at New Hope Shelter — watching the homeless shelter get established downtown and then move to the old Youthville Campus on West Broadway. The shelter has been renamed in that time as well.
“I have been there since 2005,” Buller said. “... Seeing it evolve as an organization and mature, doing the books and seeing the income grow as the needs increased (has been rewarding).”
The board is designed for members to serve up to three, three-year terms. Buller, however, has stuck around a little longer.
“I do the books, and there was nobody interested or able or willing to do the books so I extended my service. Now we have someone, and she is really good,” Buller said.
For a number of years there was no hired staff, the shelter ran entirely on volunteers — and the board was, at times, overtaxed.
“The board was up to our elbows in the day-to-day operations of the place, and that was hard,” Buller said. “It was draining. It stretched everyone very thin, and I was on the periphery of all of that and not really down in the trenches. They were down there everyday. … there was a lot of blood, sweat and tears dumped into it.”
He, along with others, stuck with it. Now the board is not as involved in the day-to-day operations.
Also during that time he was a member of the Fox Theatre board, a group that maintained the theater downtown and worked at renovations. That group sold the building to a local church.
“I am proud of the shows we brought in here,” Buller said. “For Newton, they were big names.”
He still works part time at Bethel, listed as an adjunct professor. He is the faculty advisor and general manager of KBCU FM 88.1. The college radio station provides students an opportunity to try their hand at broadcasting, with a “couple dozen” involved with creating live programming.