Bert Gilbert has been a resident of the Bloomington area since 1979, arriving as a student at Indiana University. Since 1987 he and his wife, Amy, have lived lived in Eastern Greene county in an 1860’s farmhouse which they have lovingly restored from the ground up.
Growing up in a 1907 craftsman style home in northern Indiana, Bert learned about home upkeep and repair early on from his father and mother who themselves renovated that home. By the age of 12, Bert had a business in the neighborhood cutting lawns and doing odd jobs. After wandering through several majors including pre-dentistry and Russian history, he ended up graduating from IU with a associate’s in Business Administration and an bachelor’s in Sculpture and Painting.
A couple of years of soul searching and working as everything from a black tie waiter to a cabinetmaker returned Bert to his childhood love; creating spaces and fixing up houses. After working for other companies for a few years he started Gilbert Construction, Inc. in 1994. He’s been working in remodeling for over thirty years.
‘It’s the constant variety and the thrill of meeting people, discussing their hopes and dreams for their home, and then working with them to make those dreams a reality’ that Bert says makes this work ‘so fun’.
Bert and Amy become empty nesters in 2010 sending their only child, Keilor, off to Yale where he is currently studying mathematics. The new found time has allowed Bert to explore his current passion; cast iron and large welded steel sculpture. He also enjoys gardening, traveling, music, poetry, photography, and creating endless projects around the house and grounds.
Amy Dyken arrived in the Bloomington in 1979 when she first attended Indiana University. There she received degrees in Business and Optometry. A native of Indianapolis, she followed in her parents footsteps, also meeting her husband as a student at IU.
Amy began her careers with a three year stint as manager of Sears Optical. She then moved to the Eye Center of Southern Indiana where she worked for 20 years in a multitude of office support positions and consistently as a surgical scrub-technician. She also assisted with the start-up of another local opthalmic office where she eventually served as bookkeeper. Currently she moonlights from Gilbert Construction working as a bookkeeper for the Community Kitchen in Bloomington, Indiana.
Additionally, Amy has played a fundamental role in the development of Gilbert Construction, managing the office and providing ethical guidance since it’s founding in 1994. She became interested in construction in 1987 through the process of remodeling her own house. As a working partner in the business, Amy enjoys the chance to develop her own systems and management style while working from home.
While constantly working two jobs, she has still made time to volunteer in many civic and social groups including Treasurer for Bloomington Swim Club and the Eastern Greene County Band. Though, above all else, she rates raising her son as her favorite profession and the one of which she is most proud.
During the rare moment Amy is not working, she enjoys cooking, canning, gardening, exercising, weaving, traveling, and doing the NYT crossword.