|Robert F. Gerken
Bob enlisted with the Pennsylvania State Police on September 28, 1967.
Upon graduating from the State Police Academy Bob
was assigned to the Patrol Unit at Troop M-Bethlehem. From 1968 to 1970 Bob was an
Alternate Youth Aid Officer for Trop M- Bethlehem. In 1970 Bob was chosen by the Crime
Section Commander of Troop M- Bethlehem to join the Vice/Narcotics Division, he would
remain in this position until 1976. Also from 1970-1980, Bob periodically instructed
Municipal Police Officers in Arrest, Search & Seizure, and Narcotic Investigations. In
1972, Bob obtained an Associate of Arts degree in Police Science from Lehigh County
Community College and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Police Science from Alvernia College in
Reading, PA, in 1976.
In 1976 Bob was chosen fro the Region One Narcotics Strike Force. Bob was promoted
in 1980 to Detective in the Criminal Investigation Unit at Troop M- Bethlehem. During his
time with the Criminal Investigation Unit, 1980-1984, Bob spent eight months detached from
Troop M- Bethlehem and was assigned to Organized Crime wiretap duty in the city of
Philadelphia. In 1985 Bob was nominated Trooper of the Year by the Crime Section
Commander. Bob returned to the Vice/ Narcotics Division of Troop M- Bethlehem at the
request of the Crime Section Commander. During his time with the Vice/Narcotics Division
1984-1986, Boob supervised the first non-consensual wiretap in the Lehigh Valley with
arrest and conviction of forty defendants. In 1986, served as Adjunct Faculty for both
Lehigh Carbon County Community College and Alvernia College until 1996. Bob was one of two
Troopers statewide chosen by the Pennsylvania State Police Commissioner for the newly
formed Bureau of Professional Responsibility, Internal Affairs Division, Bob would serve
this position from 1986-1993. In 1991, Bob was promoted to the rank of Corporal and
assigned the Supervisor of the Bureau of Professional Responsibility, he would serve in
this capacity until 1993. Bob retired from the Pennsylvania State Police in 1993 after
twenty-five years of service.
Following his retirement Bob became the owner and operator from 1993-1997 of Alpha
investigations, Inc, Licensed Private Investigator. From 1997-200, Bob was the Supervisor
for U.S. Security Care, Executive Protection, in Blue Bell, PA. Bob is currently the
Director of Public Safety for Albright College in Reading, PA and a Certified Rape
Aggression Defense Instructor.
Additional training that Bob has received through the years includes: Narcotic
Identification and Investigation, Criminal Conspiracy, Drug Investigations- Federal Drug
Enforcement Administration, Criminal Homicide Investigation, Organized Crime Seminar,
Class A Wiretap and Electronic Surveillance Certification- PA State Police,
Investigation of Shootings by Police Officers- Bucks County District Attorney, Narcotics
Investigations- New Jersey State Police and U.S. Dept. of Justice, Financial Investigation
Techniques- U.S. Dept. of Treasury, and Act 235 Certification.
Bob is also active with many professional organizations including: Fraternal Order
of Police, National Association of Chiefs of Police, Berks County Chiefs of Police,
International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators, Northeast Colleges
& Universities Security Association, PA Association of Campus Crime Prevention
Practitioners, Board Member of Crime Alert Berks County, Vidocq Society- Cold case
Homicide Investigators, College Heights Community Council, and the Advisory Board of the
Criminal Justice Program at Reading area Community College.
Corporal Robert Gerken has been an Oral History volunteer interviewer since 2005