Sometimes a book, or even just a line, chapter or passage within a book can stick with us long after we’ve read its final page.  We asked some of our favorite community members to tell us about a book that’s had a meaningful impact on them.

Lisa Hu Chen | Documentary Photographer

When I was in my 20’s, married without kids, I became friends with a woman I would see every day for years in the locker room at our gym. She was older, a mom, very wise, and treated me so kindly. We talked about everything – career, culture, hopes and dreams, life. I often sought her advice and she was so good about giving it – respectful yet firm. Once, our conversation turned towards having kids and the responsibility of it all. I told her that I wanted kids but I also wanted to be ready for them. Read more>>

Malado Francine | Artist, Writer, Curator / Painting Conservator & Artist Manage

I have been slowly reading The Overstory by Richard Powers this spring. I’ll pick up other books, and news, but keep coming back to passages in this book; re-reading and dog-earing pages, reveling in its luscious use of language. I’m taking it as slow as I need. In this quiet, reflective time, I’m finding solace in remarking on all the little things and how they connect: ”Join enough living things together, through the air and underground, and you wind up with something that has intention….“ p. 284, The Overstory. Read more>>

Savannah Foster | NFL Agent & Vice President of Client Relations

One of my favorite books that I’ve read recently is Everything is Figureoutable by Marie Forleo. This book was particularly impactful because it reverberates the major themes which guide me in my career. I often compare my job to that of Olivia Pope in Scandal. Each day brings new challenges, and you just have to figure it out through sheer grit, determination and creative problem solving. I enjoy tackling each new challenge because in the end, I know I’ll figure it out. Read more>>

Cynthia Grilli | Painter/art professor

The book that I always return to again and again is Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke. I first discovered it in college and it gave me hope that I wasn’t alone in my artistic angst. The fact that Rilke, who was so gifted and accomplished but also gravely ill, took the time to write these beautiful letters to a struggling student amazed me. His advice and encouragement is so spot on, so timeless. I have quoted and clung to certain passages like a holy book, especially in trying times like the one we now find ourselves in. Read more>>

Sean Kobi Sandoval | Photography Artist

The Tao Te Cheng is an extremely dense “bible” for Taoism, an ancient Chinese philosophy from 6th Century BCE. I began exploring Taoism in search for a healthier mind and lifestyle, guidance to oneness. To follow the Tao (the way of the universe), is the path to virtue, happiness, and harmony. To understand this, we must learn to act as what Taoists call Wu Wei: flowing, or effortless action. It teaches to be like water and go with the flow of whatever happens in life. Read more>>

Laurel Mintz | Digital & Experiential Marketing Agency CEO (Elevate My Brand)

The law of attraction by Esther and Jerry Hicks has had a major impact on me. Its basic premise is that the things we put energy into are the things that we manifest, good, bad or ugly. It’s really helped me to recognize a thought that doesn’t serve me and pivot to something more useful and positive. It’s so important to be an optimist when you’re an entrepreneur. Read more>>

Fabia Panjarian | Artist

I’m currently reading Being and Time by Heidegger, mainly because I think about the relationship those have with how I process visual experience. Heidegger poses the conditions by which being is a dynamic dance between an active organism and its environment. This book feels contemporary even though it was written in the early 20th C. Recently time feels more prolonged, and the experiences and anxieties of being are felt more intensely, because there’s time for presence to be actually sensed. Read more>>