As a political science and history, major Mark Slade found U of T to be long on openness and ideology, and short on attitude or arrogance. He says that environment shaped him. “It helped me become a person that is more open-minded who could listen to people,” he says. What also helped him was the passion and enthusiasm of his professors. “I can’t name how many outstanding professors I had. I learned that you have to believe in what you’re doing. So many of my professors believed wholeheartedly in what they were doing.”
It’s that passion and enthusiasm that took Slade to the Asia-Pacific after graduation and landed him in progressively responsible positions in the logistics field. Today he is the President of DHL Global Forwarding in Japan.
Living in the Asia-Pacific region since graduating has been made easier by the vast network of U of T graduates who also call it home. “We’ve got a very large and dynamic group here that I’ve tapped into at various stages of my career,” says Slade. “U of T has a great reputation in this part of the world and tremendous ambassadors who are making a difference.”
Slade, who won a Cressy Award at the U of T for his work as editor of the St. Michael’s College newspaper, said that after graduating from U of T in 1996 he studied political science for two years at the University of Hong Kong during the transition to Chinese rule. He had previously taught English in Hong Kong during a couple of summers.
He moved to Indonesia in 2000 and later that year worked in Singapore before moving to Tokyo six years ago.
He is a strong believer in mentoring others and says “one mentor is not enough.” He is part of a mentoring program at DHL and helps others in his business, some of whom are in other countries.