Our vision of helping every kid to develop the self-confidence they need to succeed is only possible with incredible people like Keith Trefry. Learn more about Keith in today’s special interview as we continue our blog series introducing the Believe in Me Board of Directors.
Keith Trefry – an experienced attorney at Paine Hamblen, has been a part of the Believe in Me team since August 2022. His impressive background includes 40 years dedicated to commercial finance, corporate law, business transactions, and more. Keith also adds legal expertise and strategic planning insight from his Juris Doctorate law degree gained at Gonzaga University, proving himself a reliable professional passionate about helping his clients and building meaningful connections with them.
Born in Moscow, Idaho, to his WSU student parents, Keith is a longtime resident of Spokane, Washington. Keith brings a world of knowledge, experience, strong leadership, and passion to help others to the Board.
Get to Know Our Board Member: An Exclusive Interview with Keith Trefry
In this exclusive interview, we will learn more about Trefry, connect with him as a board member, with his work and passions, and learn how a great team is changing the lives of marginalized kids. In addition, every question relates to our mission and our five pillars of caring: transitional living, education, enrichment, wraparound services, and foster care & adoption.
The conversation with Keith was a true pleasure! I discovered an incredible journey of learning and growth, filled with groundbreaking accomplishments. From this brilliant individual, we learned the wisdom that life can bring – if you open yourself up to it.
A transcript of Trefry’s answers, shortened for brevity, can be found below.
Transitional Living – A Safe Place to Call Home
Believe in Me: Did you have a safe place to call home growing up?
Keith Trefry: Yes, I was lucky to have it. My dad was a deputy sheriff, and my mom was a school teacher and coach. I have two siblings. We grew up in a neighborhood with similar-sized families with kids about the same ages. It was also a different era. People didn’t always lock their doors back then, and there was very little crime. My dad worked as a cop for 22 years and never drew his weapon.
Believe in Me: Do you speak any other languages?
Keith Trefry: No. I took Spanish in high school for a couple of years and always regretted not pursuing that more. However, it’s surprising that I still remember as much as I do. One of the things that I have on my list for retirement is to become more fluent in Spanish.
Foster Care and Adoption – A Family That Loves Them
Believe in Me: Who are the people that you call family?
Keith Trefry: The quick answer I would have given will be my immediate family: my mother, my two siblings, their kids, my son, and his wife. That’s the core of what I call family. But I have a couple of very close friends, so if I’m expanding my brain and thinking about the word, I would probably include these friends as family, too. I have two best friends I’m very close to, and I would probably include them.
Believe in Me: What did you want to be as a kid?
Keith Trefry: I wanted to be a fighter pilot. I had an uncle who was a fighter pilot in the Air Force, and I thought he was pretty cool. He was in Portland, we visited him in the airbase, and he let me sit in the jet, and I thought it was so cool!
Believe in Me: What lessons did you learn from your parents, teachers, or coaches?
Keith Trefry: My parents were hard-working and honest, and they also taught me the importance of keeping your word. That’s how I was raised.
Wraparound Services – A Feeling of Community:
Believe in Me: Did you face any challenges throughout your education?
Keith Trefry: I was lucky to go to good schools. My mom was a teacher, so the emphasis was always on learning. I’m also highly competitive, so my goal was always to get a 100% on a test, or get straight A’s, so excelling in academics was important to me.
Believe in Me: What is your favorite thing about your career?
Keith Trefry: That has evolved over the years. I enjoyed helping people. I’m a business lawyer, so I help people with transactions, contracts, and more. I also enjoy the relationships with my clients.
Believe in Me: What academic accomplishment are you the proudest of?
Keith Trefry: That varied over time. Early in college, I made the president’s list; then, was graduating cum laude. But that’s just scratching the surface at this point. The fact that I got a doctorate in law is probably the thing I’m most proud of.
Enrichment – Build Self-esteem and Have Fun
Believe in Me: What’s your “guiltiest” pleasure?
Keith Trefry: I’m a foodie. I enjoy going to exciting fine-dining type restaurants and experiencing new kinds of foods. I love to cook, too.
Keith´s Believe in Me story
Believe in Me: Who is your hero? Do you have a Believe in Me story?
Keith Trefry: The person most responsible for who I am today, supporting my accomplishments and making me believe in myself, would be my Mom!
About Keith´s Involvement on the Board of Directors
Believe in Me: What about our mission excites you?
Keith Trefry: I was introduced to Julie by a mutual friend, and my friend thought that Julie and I would connect and my network and her network would be compatible and help each other out. At that time, Julie was looking to re-structuring the Board, and at the end of our conversation, she said she would like me to join the Board and help the community.
In conclusion, we are very grateful that Keith accepted Julie’s offer to join our board. He is an outstanding attorney and a wonderful addition to the Believe in Me team. His decades of experience, his Juris Doctorate Law degree, and most of all his dedication to helping people make him an exemplary source of knowledge, support, and strength. What we can learn from him is that if you put your heart into something and truly believe that it can make a difference, amazing things can happen. Keith is an inspiration-one who has shown us there can be success when intelligence meets action. I am sure that Keith’s journey will serve as a great example to everyone looking to rise above expectations with their professional aspirations.