EIFL mourns the passing of our friend and colleague Geoffrey Salanje, our Country Coordinator in Malawi. Geoffrey has been part of the EIFL family for almost a decade and will continue to be remembered as a kind, warm and generous person who will be greatly missed by us all.
Nominated to his position at EIFL by the Malawi Library and Information Consortium (MALICO) in 2012, he worked as a University Librarian at Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (LUANAR).
During the period that Geoffrey was a coordinator the usage of EIFL licensed e-resources by MALICO member libraries grew dramatically - with almost 1 million full text articles and book chapters downloaded by Malawi students and researchers over a ten-year period. EIFL also worked with Geoffrey and MALICO to develop model open access policies, adopted by two universities in Malawi, including Geffrey’s university LUANAR. These policies, and institutional repositories, set up by a number of universities, have opened up Malawian research to the rest of the world.
Geoffrey also helped MALICO initiate the implementation of EIFL negotiated remote access solutions for commercial e-resources, which proved extremely helpful for students and researchers during the lockdown of universities due to COVID-19.
The EIFL community fondly remember time spent with Geoffrey at our annual General Assemblies (GA) in Armenia, Turkey, Latvia, Moldova, Georgia, Qatar, and Kyrgyzstan, where he shared his experiences from Malawi and greatly contributed to the convivial atmosphere of the meetings.
The EIFL family have been paying tribute to a great friend and colleague, remembering - ‘he always saw the best, most humorous and joyous side’…’his enthusiasm’… ‘a very generous and pleasant person’… ‘a bright and professional representative of his country’… ‘a warm friend’… ‘such a kind-hearted person’... ‘a very positive person who always had funny stories to tell. I will always remember him as a smiling person full of joy’... ‘I've met with Geoffrey in many EIFL GA meetings and can't forget his wonderful character and pleasant nature’...’Geoffrey was a kind, humorous, and welcoming man who brought sunlight with him wherever he was’... ’Geoffrey had a unique way of relating with people. You wouldn’t feel like a stranger in his presence. A friend of all’...‘a very active participant with lots of ideas to share. He was very special to us’.
We are thinking of Geoffrey’s family, friends and colleagues at this time and send our deepest condolences.