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HSLIC: History of HSLIC

Maine Health Science Libraries and Information Consortium

History of HSLIC

Happy Anniversary, HSLIC!


On June 22, 1973, Melda Page, Chief of Library Service at the Veterans' Administration Center at Togus, arranged a meeting to discuss the formation of a library consortium for the purpose of cooperation among librarians and the sharing of their resources. The 14 librarians who attended the meeting agreed to form a steering committee, which proceeded to lay the groundwork for the organization. As a result of their work the Health Sciences Library and Information Cooperative of Maine was formed in October of 1973*.

The early years of HSLIC were mostly exploratory. Committees were established to draft by-laws for the consortium and to investigate the most pressing needs of the group. The first project taken on was interlibrary loan. A journal list was assembled and distributed among the membership and that list, together with standardized record keeping and statistics forms, led to the publication of an ILL procedure manual.

Rapid developments in the 1970's led to the creation of a central office for HSLIC with a paid coordinator, Christopher Lavin, working out of Togus and funded by Medical Care Development, the University of Maine, and the Veterans' Administration. His duties included fundraising and consortium public relations, particularly in presenting the group's goals to the administrators of member institutions.

The coordinator and the Executive Board guided the activities of the consortium through the committee structure. They produced a union list of journal holdings which was incorporated into the Maine Union List of Serials (MULS), a union list of audiovisual materials, an interlibrary loan manual, a publicity packet for new members and a newsletter which was published on a regular basis. When the grant support ended in 1980, the coordinator's responsibilities were assumed by the Executive Board and the consortium's committees.

In 1979 HSLIC hosted a very successful annual meeting of the North Atlantic Health Sciences Libraries (NAHSL) at Sebasco Estates. This was followed by other well attended and greatly enjoyed regional meetings on a 5-year rotation with the other state groups in NAHSL.

HSLIC has grown from its original 14 members to over 50, and in 1993 celebrated its 20th anniversary at Presque Isle. The Board, together with the committees, has led in building on the foundation so solidly constructed by the original members and has continued to foster cooperation and resource sharing by all who work together as vital parts of the consortium.

Excerpted and revised by Marjorie Anderson from the history of HSLIC, written by Gabrielle Kirkpatrick our first archivist.

*In 1988 HSLIC became incorporated and at that time changed the designation "cooperative" to "consortium."

Revised April 1995

25th Anniversary

HSLIC 25th Anniversary graphic

Over 30 people gathered at the Augusta Country Club on October 23, 1998 to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the founding of HSLIC. The Silver Soiree began with a social hour as old and new friends mingled while father and daughter Stephen and Lauren Hastings provided delightful background music. After enjoying a delicious buffet dinner, the group was welcomed by chairperson Cindy White (EMMC) who confirmed what most already knew - that the celebration not only marked 25 years of HSLIC but also provided an opportunity to recognize Nancy Greenier (MaineGeneral at Augusta) who will soon be retiring after many years of service to HSLIC and the library profession. Sue Jagels (EMMC) presented a visual tribute to Nancy in the form of a PowerPoint show which was followed by several HSLIC members who read written tributes to Nancy from those unable to attend. Dr. Richie Kahn (Pen Bay Medical Center) provided comic relief with his remarks, then Patty Kahn (Pen Bay Medical Center) presented Nancy with gifts and a basket of cards.

After Nancy graciously cut and served the anniversary cake, the serious brain work began as Sue Jagels tested the group's memory with her second PowerPoint show, HSLIC: Who, What, Where, and When? The selection of pictures ranged from the early years of HSLIC (founding member Eleanor Cairns in her library) to spring of 1998 when Patty Kahn received the Cairns Award. Although the audience was able to identify most of the pictures, they were completely stumped by a few.

As the laughter subsided and the group dispersed, all agreed that it had been a lovely evening and a celebration worthy of HSLIC!

Photos from the Silver Soiree