Ian Colford is retiring from the Dalhousie Libraries after a career spanning 32 years. Ian began his work life as a librarian in 1985 at TUNS, the Technical University of Nova Scotia (TUNS amalgamated with Dalhousie University in 1997). In 1987 Ian took a job at the Killam Library at Dalhousie. He had applied for the position of history subject specialist, but after a long hiring process and staff changes at the Killam, he was hired as the new English liaison librarian. He soon took on Theatre and later Math — a good fit with his undergraduate degree from Saint Mary’s University in mathematics.
As a Killam Reference Librarian, Ian remembers working in a “bull-pen” like room, with 8 or 9 other librarians. Only the head of the department had a phone on her desk. All other staff shared one phone in the middle of the room. All librarians, too, had to take a turn each week shelving catalogue cards in the card catalogue. At TUNS, Ian served on an initial Novanet planning committee. The Novanet catalogue was first implemented in 1988.
From 2006 to 2013 Ian was the Assistant University Librarian for Collections. His career then took a turn, a u-turn, and he returned in 2013 to what had been TUNS, now the Sexton Campus of Dalhousie University. Ian assumed liaison responsibilities with the Faculty of Architecture & Planning, and in Engineering, but also ventured into a brand new area for him. He took responsibility for a digitization project to create an open-access, web accessible archive of the Journal of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC), 1924-1973. Ian streamlined procedures and gave new life to the project; he embraced it whole-heartedly, and his focus and dedication to the Archive is admirable.
Ian, all this time, has had a second career as a writer of novels and short stories. So, he may be retiring from Dalhousie but he won’t be at loose ends. We can look forward to many more stories! He also has plans to continue with the Atlantic Book Awards Committee, to volunteer, to watch the entire DVD set of Homicide: Life on the Street, to bake cakes, to spend time with his wife Collette and their three cats (Cassidy, Moirah and Saige), and to cook elaborate dinners.
We will miss Ian very much and say farewell with all our best wishes. Happy retirement! (Don’t forget … we love cake!)