Staff Profile Series: Jeff Laitinen

Meet the team! Check back each month to learn more about the people who help the Ontario Library Service provide seamless access to programs and services that strengthen all public libraries in Ontario.

Calvin and Hobbes Dancing

Name: Jeff Laitinen              

Position: JASI Support Analyst

Growing up in Sault Ste. Marie, I often visited the public library with my mom, and recall checking out many Peanuts books as a young boy. I remember thinking I’d like to work in a library, even back then. In 1991-92 I took the first year of the Cartography program at Sir Sandford Fleming College, receiving Dean’s list honours but did not return for the second year as I was at odds with where my career would lead – we were all told we would likely work in the mining industry, surveying and mapping areas for extracting resources. I saw this as ‘mapping the world to be destroyed’ so did not return. In 1998 I graduated from Seneca college with my diploma in Computer Graphics Imagery, which included animation, website, and graphic design. I started working at Ontario Library Service in 2002 (OLS-North at the time) in the Marketing Department, transferring to JASI when it started up in 2007.

If you could become a character from any book who would you pick and why? Calvin from Calvin & Hobbes by Bill Watterson. He’s got a great sense of humour, asks the big questions, and is endlessly imaginative – doing his own thing.

My favourite meal is… I’m absolutely not a ‘foodie’, anything that fills my belly (except for liver!). Favourite beer: Innis & Gunn original ; )

My desert island record is… There is sooo much great music out there, it’s hard to pick. If I had to choose just one album (today) I’d have to pick Bitches Brew by Miles Davis, I don’t think I’d ever get tired of listening to that.

My favourite desert island book is… a good survival skills book 😉

A random and seldom known fact about me is… I’m not much of a traveler, but I’d really love to visit my ‘real’ homeland: Finland, someday. Both my parents were born in Finland, but met in Wawa, ON.

What was the most personally inspiring public library related work you’ve helped make a reality during your time with the OLS? Any time I help a library resolve an issue or I can make their job a bit easier makes me happy, and is a reminder of why we do our job.

What do diversity, inclusivity, and connection mean to you? Everyone living together as a community, working together for the betterment of all.