Leslie Haas …In Six

My interview with success story Leslie

Naomi: How did you find your current job?
Leslie: I was looking through ALA Joblist and came across the advertisement for a library director for Zayed University in the UAE. I was intrigued and did some research on the university and what life is like in the UAE. I decided to apply for the job and did not hear from them for several months, then I received an email that I was on the short list and after several conversations and exchanges of emails–I accepted the job. It was a long process, but well worth the effort!

Naomi: Favorite library you have been to?
Leslie: My favorite library is the Salt Lake City Public Library. It is just a beautiful building and I always loved sitting on the roof enjoying the gardens, drinking coffee in their cafe and browsing their collections. I always liked curling up in front of their fireplaces to read a magazine or book on a snowy afternoon.

Naomi: Favorite book?
Leslie: So hard to pick just one book, so many to choose from. I just finished Jeneration X by Jen Lancaster, very funny and I am also getting ready to start reading Lifeboat. I go through phases, right now starting my new job I am doing a lot of reading about leadership and the future of libraries and learning commons.

Naomi: Favorite thing about libraries/ library technology?
Leslie: I love the atmosphere of the library, it can be both stimulating and soothing, depending on your mood. Every day brings something new and I can honestly say that I am never bored as there is always something new to learn.

Naomi: Any websites or feeds or blogs we should be following?
Leslie: Designing Better Libraries
The Kept Up Academic Librarian
The Chronicle of Higher Education
Unshelved (just for laughs!)

Naomi: Best piece of job hunting advice?
Leslie: Be adventurous and don’t limit yourself. Be open to new possibilities, you never know what doors will open for you.

Leslie is the new Director of the Learning Commons and Abu Dhabi Campus librarian for Zayed University in the UAE. As an undergraduate at Boise State University, she knew she wanted to be a librarian and after talking to several reference librarians, decided to become a business major to increase the chances that she would be able to find a library job after getting her MLS at the University of Arizona. Over the course of her career, Leslie has lived in Texas, Ohio, Utah and Illinois. Before heading off to the UAE, Leslie was the Director of the Klarchek Information Commons at Loyola University Chicago.

Naomi House

Naomi House, MLIS, is the founder and publisher of the popular webzine and jobs list INALJ.com (formerly I Need a Library Job) and former CMO (Chief Marketing Officer) of T160K.org, a crowdfunding platform focused on African patrimony, heritage and cultural projects. INALJ was founded in October 2010 with the assistance of her fellow Rutgers classmate, Elizabeth Leonard. Its social media presence has grown to include Facebook (retired in 2016), Twitter and a LinkedIn group, in addition to the interviews, articles and jobs found on INALJ. INALJ has had over 21 Million page hits and helped many, many thousands of librarians find employment! Through grassroots marketing, word of mouth and a real focus on exploring unconventional resources for job leads, INALJ grew from a subscription base of 20 friends to a website with over 500,000 visits in one month. Naomi believes that well-sourced quantity is quality in this narrow job market and INALJ reflects this with many new jobs published daily. She has also written for the 2011, 2012 and 2013 LexisNexis Government Info Pro and many other publications in the past decade. She presents whenever she can, including serving on three panels at the American Library Association's Annual Conference in Las Vegas; as breakout presenter at OCLC EMEA in Cape Town, South Africa; as a keynote speaker at the Virginia Library Association annual meeting; at the National Press Club in Washington DC; McGill University in Montreal, Canada; the University of the Emirates, Dubai, MLIS program and the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Naomi was a Reference, Marketing and Acquisitions Librarian for a contractor at a federal library outside Washington, DC, and has been living and working in Budapest, Hungary and Western New York State. She spent years running her husband’s moving labor website, fixed and sold old houses and assisted her husband cooking delicious Pakistani food. She is preparing to re-enter the workforce and is job hunting. Her husband is now the co-editor of INALJ, a true support!  She has heard of spare time but hasn’t encountered it lately. She pronounces INALJ as eye-na-elle-jay.