Bob Gibson, a volunteer at the East Shore Area Library since 2018, gets no special privileges for sharing the name of a Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher. With his trademark sense of humor, he jokes that even the St. Louis Cardinals wouldn’t let him throw a pitch from the mound when he visited their stadium. Our Bob Gibson, of Lower Paxton Township, made his mark as a Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection civil engineer before retiring in 2009. Over his 32 years with the department, he worked first in flood control and then in remediating sources of pollution to the Chesapeake Bay.
Why did you volunteer? I have always liked reading, but was frustrated when I couldn’t find books I was looking for. The library is a good place to help people. I also like it because I can work year-round (I used to volunteer providing free tax returns from February to April). In addition, the schedule is very flexible for volunteers. And the staff members are always there to answer volunteers’ questions.
What are your duties? I shelve returned books and, as time allows, I check the shelves to straighten them out and make sure the books and other items are in their proper place. I am responsible specifically for the biography section.
What are your favorite books? Since volunteering at the library, I’ve read a lot of biographies of singers, athletes and TV and movie people. I recently checked out a book on George Lucas. I also like to read fiction and other non-fiction books.
What surprises you as a volunteer? I was unaware of just how much libraries have evolved and changed! People can call or go online to request books, DVDs and Blu-ray discs, jigsaw puzzles, audiobooks, etc. One of my other duties, is to gather the requested items, which are then sorted, and put on a shelf where the patrons can stop to pick them up and get them checked out.