Jill Smith has been appointed director of the Denver Publishing Institute, effective January 1, 2015. Smith has worked at the Institute since 2003 and is currently co-director. She succeeds Joyce Meskis, who is retiring as director after seven years (though she will keep her responsibilities at Tattered Cover Bookstore.)
Rayhane Sanders will join Lippincott Massie McQuilkin as Agent, effective January 1, continuing to build her list of upmarket and literary fiction, narrative nonfiction, and memoir. Most recently she was an agent at WSK Management and before that she assisted Dorian Karchmar at William Morris Endeavor.
At Little, Brown, Fiona Brown has been promoted to associate director of publicity for James Patterson; Little, Brown; and Little, Brown Children’s. She will report to publicity director Sabrina Callahan, and have a dotted line reporting to children’s publicity director Melanie DeNardo. Morgan Moroney has been promoted to publicist, reporting to Liz Garriga.
Jeanne Reina will join the William Morrow group as vp, art director on November 24, reporting to Liate Stehlik. Her department is responsible for all Morrow hardcover and trade paperbacks, as well as Dey Street books. She was most recently art director for Atria Books.
Amanda Bullock will join Literary Arts Inc. as festival and events manager for the Wordstock Festival on January 5. Bullock is currently director of public programming at Housing Works Bookstore & Cafe, and she will relocate from New York to Portland.
Ingram has launched a holiday promotion for independent booksellers (promotion code – IE) that provides free freight, additional discounts on popular titles and the opportunity to earn a percentage back on eligible purchases this season. More information about the program can be found here.
Penguin Random House has a different type of holiday campaign underway, focused on consumers. Their social media #GiveABook program starts on November 29, and will donate up to 25,000 books to Save the Children while promoting books as holiday gifts.
The American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression (ABFFE) — founded by the American Booksellers Association in 1990 — will formally be integrated into the ABA as of January 1 “because they believe it will produce administrative efficiencies” and will help to “expand the free speech programming that is available to independent booksellers.” ABA ceo Oren Teicher says, “As was the case with ABC and ABA, the integration of ABFFE and ABA will make it possible to devote more resources to programming by consolidating administrative functions and reducing the need for fundraising.” President Chris Finan will become ABFE Group director, and the staff will relocate to the ABA’s White Plains office in January. ABFE’s board will be reconstituted as an advisory council.
Following the WSJ’s report in October that Amazon was taking over most or all of an office building near the Empire State Building on 34th Street in Manhattan — with unconfirmed suggestions that it “would function as a mini-warehouse” and might “showcase” Amazon electronics for sale — Vornado Realty Trust has confirmed the lease. The company said “it has completed a 17-year lease with Amazon for 470,000 square feet at 7 West 34th Street.” An Amazon spokesperson told the Seattle Times: “We have leased this building primarily as corporate office space and we intend to sublease to other tenants the ground-floor retail space.” The paper still concludes that “some of the space will likely serve as that warehouse, holding a limited inventory of goods frequently purchased by Amazon’s New York customers.” But “Amazon has no current plans to open its own store in the space.”