People, Etc.

Mary Albi is returning to Phaidon as vice president, leading their US operation as of April 1, reporting to ceo David Davies. She had run Phaidon in the US previously until leaving in 2003. Albi has been sales and marketing director at Egmont USA since 2009.

Amanda D'Acierno has been promoted to svp, publisher at Random House Audio, Fodor's, and Living Language.

At Crown/Hogarth, Zack Wagman has been promoted to senior editor, and Christine Kopprasch moves up to associate editor.

Brandon Proia has joined the University of North Carolina Press as acquisitions editor. Previously he was an editor at Public Affairs.

At Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Michaela Sullivan has been named vp, creative director taking on responsibility for design of the culinary line, CliffsNotes, and Webster's New World Dictionaries in addition to the general interest list. In addition, Rebecca Springer has been named managing editor, digital cookbooks while Marina Padakis moves up to managing editor, cookbooks.

At Chronicle books, Liz Rico has been promoted to design director, marketing communication, while Kim Lauber moves up to associate director, children's marketing.

Following our story in January, Paul Bresnick reports that he has finalized terms for assuming control of the Wendy Weil Agency. He will now conduct all business under a new banner, the Bresnick Weil Literary Agency.

MacKenzie Fraser-Bub is joining Trident Media Group as a women's fiction agent. Most recently she worked in marketing at Touchstone as publishing manager (and she was previously an assistant at Trident).

At Tor/Forge, Theresa DeLucci has been promoted to assistant director, advertising & promotion.

Gigi Lamm will join Running Press on March 11 as senior publicist. Previously she was senior press officer at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Real estate mogul Sam Zell's wife Helen Zell will announce a $50 million gift today to support the University of Michigan's graduate writing program. The money "will essentially underwrite it in perpetuity, while offering flexibility for new projects." She was an English major at Michigan, and graduates of the writing program, which enrolls 22 people a year, include Graduates include writers Elizabeth Kostova, Hanna Pylvainen and Jesymn Ward. She says: "The ability of fiction to develop creativity, to analyze the human psyche, help you understand people — it's critical. It's as important as vitamins or anything else. To me, it's the core of the intellectual health of human beings."

She "described the new donation as an investment in some of the world's promising young poets and novelists, to ensure the books they have inside them get written, shared with the world." Already, Michigan's program "covers tuition and offers a $22,000 stipend for students while they take classes their first year, then pays them for teaching during their second" and provides a third year of post-doc support.

The 25th annual Triangle Awards, presented on April 25, will honor John D'Emilio as the 2013 recipient of the Publishing Triangle's Bill Whitehead Award for Lifetime Achievement. He is the author or editor of multiple books, including Lost Prophet: The Life and Times of Bayard Rustin, which won the Publishing Triangle's Randy Shilts Award for Gay Nonfiction.

Separately, the Lambda Literary Awards, also in their 25th year, announced their nominees, across 23 categories. Winners will be announced at a ceremony in New York on June 3.