Office for Information Systems - Harvard University Library

Dale Flecker to Retire on June 30

Author: Robert Darnton

Date: 20 Apr 2009 11:41:21

Source: hulinfo

Dale Flecker, Associate Director for Planning and Systems at the Harvard University Library, will retire on June 30. Flecker served the Library for nearly 31 years as an expert in information technology and libraries. He came to Harvard as a systems librarian in 1978, directed the Office for Systems Planning and Research from 1979 to 1985, and became an Associate Director of HUL in 1985.

Dale did more than anyone to guide the Library into the digital age. He understood the possibilities and the problems of e-journals, e-books, and e-catalogues as soon as they appeared on the horizon. At the turn of the century, there were no models for creating a library digital infrastructure that would store and preserve digital objects. Thanks to Dale, Harvard took the lead in this crucial area with its Digital Repository Service, and it pioneered in other aspects of online teaching and research through the Library Digital Initiative. Dale's advice determined library policy at many critical junctures. We will badly miss him.

Dale was educated at Wayne State University and the University of Michigan. He was a systems analyst in the libraries of Michigan and Yale before coming to Harvard. During his long career he served on committees and boards throughout the world of research libraries. The Library of Congress, the New York Public Library, the British Library, the Oxford University Library, and the Peking University Library among many others have drawn on his expertise in information technology.

We will, of course, plan an occasion to celebrate with Dale and to thank him for his many contributions to Harvard — and, indeed, to us all. The details will be announced on HULinfo at a later date.