Scottsdale Salutes library volunteer Pat Ansell

Pat Ansell (submitted photo)

Pat Ansell (submitted photo)

Scottsdale resident Pat Ansell has been donating her time to the Scottsdale Public Library after receiving so much from the library over the past two decades.

Ms. Ansell, a resident since 1975, began taking her grandchildren to the library years ago.

“The library has done so much for my grandchildren,” said Ms. Ansell during a Dec. 3 phone interview. “So I was able to give back what they gave me.”

Ms. Ansell began volunteering at the library about five years ago after retiring from the banking industry.

“My granddaughter, she is 25-years-old, and she did her graduate work in library science. She has her diploma from Portland University and I took her to the library. I also took my grandson, Noah, and he is in his second year at ASU.”

Ms. Ansell said her grandson excelled at reading.

“Vista Del Camino closed for a little bit and I took my grandson and his three friends to the library,” said Ms. Ansell. “It gave them an outlook.”

The low cost is one aspect of the library that always attracted Ms. Ansell.

“They went from the children’s section, to the teens to the adult section. Can you imagine if I had to buy all those books?” said Ms. Ansell.

When her granddaughter was 11-years-old, Ms. Ansell even enticed her to read 25 books over the summer by promising to make her a quilt if she completed the goal.

“I want to give back something that was given to me,” said Ms. Ansell.

And giving back, she is.

Now, Ms. Ansell sorts and prices donated books for the library shop three times a week.

“There is quite a wide selection,” said Ms. Ansell. “We have classics along with nonfiction, and there’s cookbooks which are popular, art books are popular – we even have a section for the older books that cost a quarter.”

Ms. Ansell’s love for books has helped her become a commodity within the library too.

“It’s very rewarding to be in the donation pricing area,” said Ms. Ansell. “Customers will say ‘that book you had recommended was really good.’”

She says people are always ecstatic when coming across a good book.

“A lot of them are in nice condition,” said Ms. Ansell. “A customer said the other day, ‘it doesn’t look like anyone has read this book!’”

Ms. Ansell says the people whom she works with at the library are also responsible for her love for the job.

“I have a super supervisor, Brandon Chapman, he is so knowledgeable in the area,” said Ms. Ansell. “It is very rewarding working with him. If you ask him about this book or that book, he will know the history of it, et cetera, et cetera. That in itself makes it rewarding.”

To become a volunteer in Scottsdale, visit

Northeast Valley News Editor Melissa Rosequist can be e-mailed at or can be followed on Twitter at

You are encouraged to leave relevant comments but engaging in personal attacks, threats, online bullying or commercial spam will not be allowed. All comments should remain within the bounds of fair play and civility. You can disagree with others courteously, without being disagreeable. Feel free to express yourself but keep an open mind toward finding value in what others say. To report abuse or spam, click the arrow in the upper right corner of the comment box.

Facebook Comment