Ira Levine

What is your name? 
Ira Levine

When did you start/how long have you been volunteering at ONE? 
I have been volunteering for the past 5 years (since 2015).

What is your favorite part about volunteering at ONE? 
As a retiree, it gives me great pleasure and purpose to help the community.  My parents owned a bookstore when I was growing up, and it is natural for me to volunteer with an organization that is dedicated to books.

Do you have a favorite collection or item you have come across? 
There are so many!!!  I loved organizing and consolidating the pulp fiction collection and learned about that genre by doing so. Also learning about the early LGBTQ pioneers.

What is the weirdest/funniest task you have done while volunteering? 
I think going through a donor's personal files, correspondence, pamphlets, photos, and awards was fascinating, and it felt a bit voyeuristic. 
What is something that you have learned about queer history while working with the collection that surprised you or you didn’t know before? 
I guess, until I visited the archives, I never realized the prolific amount of queer literature.  I knew about some fiction books, and some famous authors, and some history, but the volumes and volumes found at ONE are a national treasure that our community should be grateful exists.

What is something about ONE that people might not know but you wish they did? 
The dedication of the professionals that work with the collection are an inspiration to me.  People think the work of an organization like ONE just "happens", but it really requires the teamwork and specialized knowledge of the staff.