Skip Bond: From Microbiologist to Advocate, Teacher & Volunteer.
Why did you step back from full-time employment (or make your latest transition)?
I was working as a microbiologist in comparative medicine and had the opportunity to retire somewhat early, so I took it! I had the urge to move on so I would have more time to volunteer meaningfully.
What surprised you most about the transition?
How easy and seamless it was because I live in a remarkable area. There are so many opportunities to do things you care about if you just stay curious and look around.
What are you doing now?
I’m waiting to take on a new case with Court Appointed Special Advocates (“CASA”) and I’m also volunteering at the VA that is close to my house. In the past few years I have given my time to Project Read and the Ravenswood Science Initiative, where I worked teaching biology to middle school students to get them ready for high school science.
How did you decide to pursue these opportunities?
These were natural fits for me! CASA because after raising two children as a single-father, I love helping kids be the best they can be. Project Read, because to me reading is the most important thing a thinking person can do to keep on learning. The VA because I am a Vietnam Veteran and I strongly believe in helping those who gave so much for all of us, and the Ravenswood Science Initiative because I love science and find that if I share well how fascinating it is with students, they love it too!
What advice would you give to someone in the same circumstances?
Grow up and give back. Somebody helped you get where you got to, now go help somebody else. Stay curious and make it your business to meet interesting people.
Special: Given your vast experience both professionally and personally, do you have a top 5 or 10 list of things that you would tell people if they would like to follow in your footsteps or follow a similar path?
For more information about being a CASA volunteer, check out our Amava Spotlight.
Skip is a clinical microbiologist whose career has included managing hospital infectious disease labs and teaching medical microbiology at DeAnza College. He has also worked in the pharmaceutical and medical device industries which involved the development of new antibiotics and infection control products. His neighbors think the world of him and wish he’d run for Mayor, Governor or President!