Special Collections & Archives (SCA) just got a little bigger with the addition of the Andrew Telegdi fonds. Andrew Telegdi (BA '80) was a federal MP from 1993 to 2008, a local Waterloo City councillor from 1985 to 1993 and a past Federation of Students (now WUSA) president from 1973-74.
Born in Budapest, Hungary, Telegdi immigrated to Canada with his family in 1957 during the Hungarian revolution. In his early twenties, he was a rock music promoter and ran the Village Bistro in Vancouver as a music venue until it closed in 1969. The 1970s saw Telegdi move east to Ontario to attend the University of Waterloo, graduating with a BA in Psychology in 1980.
During his time at Waterloo, Telegdi was actively involved in student politics, participating as a student representative on the Senate as well as two terms as president for the Waterloo Undergraduate Student Association.
After graduating Telegdi stayed in the area, working in regional politics and at youth organizations that support those in legal difficulty. He helped launch the first Justice Week in Canada right here in Waterloo in 1979.
In 1993, he ran in the federal election to become an MP for the Liberal party, holding the seat for the Waterloo region until 2008. During his tenure, he worked on issues related to citizenship and immigration, same-sex marriage, crime and diplomatic relations. He also remained a strong advocate for student voices, often visiting local campuses to speak directly to the issues impacting youth.
Including unique personal memorabilia and political correspondence, the collection was donated by Nancy Telegdi, his wife, in 2017. Since then, Nicole Marcogliese, Special Collections & Archives Archivist, has invested a significant amount of time processing the donation and researching Telegdi's life to confirm details to complete a "finding aid," which makes the collection searchable to researchers.
This collection will be vital to researchers conducting original research into local and national political issues. Looking back at how policies have progressed over the years can provide important context and direction for the future.
The Andrew Telegdi fonds is now available for viewing in person. If you would like to view items from the collection, contact SCA to book an appointment.