On a Tuesday or a Thursday, you are likely to find Chuck Bowden talking about stereos, TVs or tools with a customer at the Stop ‘N Shop. Chuck has been volunteering with us for seven years and says he has found his niche with testing, tuning, refurbishing, fixing, cleaning and marketing all our audio and video products. He’s also a great listener with a wonderful, dry sense of humor.
Chuck’s interest in electronics started at age 10 with an electronic circuit set and a shortwave radio kit. In college he cast a wide net with a bachelor’s in humanities and an electrical engineering specialization. His first job was at the marine store at Shilshole Marina and, after a year or so, he was hired by Fluke Electronics in Everett to be a technical writer. After writing manuals for 15 years, he became a marketing specialist in the research and development of new product ideas. This brought years of international travel and lots of listening to and observing people in the electronics industry to help people use Fluke products.
When asked what keeps him volunteering, Chuck says, “When I see someone studying the electronic products, I really enjoy talking with that person and listening carefully to what they say and figuring out what they might need. I like seeing the hidden gems of older products that come in as donations. There was a 1970 Sanyo toaster made in Japan. It was a thing of beauty with its mirror-chrome sides and pivoting handle. Then there was the 1858 Jaeger LeCoultre Atmis Clock that runs off changes in air temperature.”
By Tessa Bowden, Stop ‘n Shop Coordinator
Photo: Gail Wodzin