Spencer Routh

Spencer Routh, Medal of the Order of Australia - OAM 2011

Taken from Kosa, G.A. (Ed.). 1990. Biographical Dictionary of Australian Librarians p 195:

Routh, Spencer James BA MA AALIA Principal librarian in charge Collection Development (Reference Department) University of Queensland, Brisbane.  Born 25 July 1935 Tambo Queensland, son of William James and Mary Napier (Spencer) Routh.  Educated Townsville Grammar School Queensland, University of Queensland BA (Hons) 1958, Registration Examination 1963, Columbia University New York USA MS 1966.  Positions: University of Queensland head of Reference Services 1959-81, present 1982 -. Membership: ALIA associate (Queensland Branch councillor, secretary, editor of “Quill”, president, treasurer various times 1961-75, associate examiner 1967-74, Board of Examiners 1972-75, Special Libraries Section Committee 1977-78, ALA, Australian Society of Archivists associate, Australian Dictionary of Biography (Queensland Working party 1975-).  Awards:  Australian-American Education Foundation grant 1965-66, Tauber-Begner Award 1966.

Taken from the University of Queensland newsletter, December 2005:

Arts in Queensland celebrated at UQ graduation ceremonies

Librarian and member of the working party on the Australian Dictionary of Biography Spencer Routh will also receive an honorary Doctor of Letters degree at the 6pm ceremony, recognising his distinguished career and nearly four decades of service to the University Library.

Mr Routh topped the Queensland Scholarship, Junior and Senior public examinations at secondary school level before graduating Bachelor of Arts, Honours, from the University of Queensland in 1958. He was a junior lecturer in the English Department then became the University's first reference librarian in 1959.

His library career included a Master of Science degree from the School of Library Science, Columbia University, New York; and earned the gratitude of researchers and students, many of whom paid tribute in their publications and theses for his "legendary assistance".

The award of an Australian Dictionary of Biography Medal in 2003 cited Mr Routh as a "Sherlock Holmes of researchers".