Passings: Noli Swatman


Noli Swatman, former director of the Office of Research Administration, died on Nov. 26 in her 79th year after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease.

Swatman dedicated 30 years to York University, and was the director of the Office of Research Administration (now the Office of Research Services) when she retired in 2004.

Noli Swatman

Born in Sligo, Ireland on July 8, 1940, Swatman arrived in Canada in 1962 from London, where she and her husband had met and married. She worked first for the Toronto law firm Osler, Hoskin and Harcourt. In 1969, she accepted a job at Osgoode Hall Law School after being interviewed by Harry Arthurs, former dean of Osgoode (1972-77), and president of York (1985-92).

Swatman left York briefly when she welcomed her first daughter, and when she returned to the University in 1976 she began work in research administration, where she worked in different capacities until her retirement.

During a retirement event honouring Swatman, former vice-president research and innovation Stan Shapson said she was recognized as one of the most popular research administrators in Canada, for having the “knowledge, skills and integrity to represent research skills at York.” During that same event, she was acknowledged for having an immense impact on the University’s research success, and driving the successful receipt and management of grants for York.

Throughout her years of service to the University, Swatman was commended for her dedication and commitment, and in 1995 she earned The President’s Leadership Award. She also earned the title of Founders College Fellow.

Swatman was the wife of Trevor (Teb) Randolph Swatman, beloved mother of Deirdre Swatman (Josh Benish), and Carrie Swatman (Chris Miller), loving Granny to James and Lola Miller, and loving Granna to Declan Benish, doting aunt and friend to many.

The service and internment was held Dec. 3 at Holy Cross Catholic Funeral Home and Holy Cross Catholic Cemetery.