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Mark Haslett checks himself out of the Library after 20 years

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Mark Haslett carries the University's mace during last June's convocation ceremony.

University Librarian Mark Haslett is retiring after 20 years at the University of Waterloo.

Haslett joined the University of Waterloo in August of 1996 as Associate University Librarian, Information Services and Systems, having previously served at McMaster University in a number of library roles including acquisitions and systems development.

As Associate University Librarian, Information Services and Systems, Haslett initiated and led a number of pioneering initiatives, the most visible being the TRELLIS shared library catalogue with TriUniversity Group of Libraries (TUG) partners the University of Guelph and Wilfrid Laurier University, which continues to this day.

On May 1, 2003, Haslett succeeded Murray Shepherd as University Librarian.

During his tenure as University Librarian, Haslett became a national leader in the areas of copyright and fair dealing, serving on the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) Copyright Committee for five years and as its chair for three years. He is the campus lead for the Copyright Advisory Committee. Haslett was the founding member of an Association of Research Libraries (ARL) Steering Committee on Scholarly Communication.

Haslett provided collaborative leadership for the Bibliometrics Working Group, which recently produced a white paper on guiding principles for the use of bibliometrics in measuring research outcome that will ensure that researchers get the credit they deserve for their research.

Haslett also presided over a period of extensive renovations to the Davis Centre and Dana Porter libraries that provided much-needed infrastructure improvements as the Library grappled with its role in an increasingly collaborative, increasingly digital learning and study environment.

The digital revolution, including sharp increases in electronic journals and other digital scholarly resources, was a major feature of Haslett's term. In his many reports to the University's Senate, Haslett pointed to the success of collaborative efforts including the Canadian Research Knowledge Network, a federally-funded consortium of 73 research universities who worked together to negotiate affordable rates for electronic journals. And rather than wither away, use of the Library's physical resources bloomed, with ever-increasing turnstile counts and new pressures for study space.

Mark Haslett chatting with students in Dana Porter Library."I think I have one of the best jobs at the University of Waterloo," Haslett said in his final report to Senate on Monday, April 18. "I consider myself privileged and fortunate to be University Librarian. Virtually everything the Library does it does in partnership, and together we are most effective in furthering Waterloo's strategic directions when we work in close collaboration with others on campus and beyond...I am privileged to have worked with such a fine staff."

Senators passed a motion of appreciation for Haslett's service and gave him a standing ovation at the conclusion of his report.

In addition to his official duties, Haslett was active in the local arts and education communities, chairing the Waterloo Collegiate Institute (WCI) School Council and singing in the Renaissance Singers choral group, the Guelph Chamber Choir and his church choir.

Haslett retires on May 1, 2016 – 13 years after becoming University Librarian. A retirement celebration is planned for Tuesday, April 26 at 3:30 p.m. in the University Club, with remarks beginning at 4:30 p.m. Please RSVP by Friday, April 22 to Graham Yeates at extension 32281 or by e-mailing

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