Julia Reidhead has been promoted to president at W.W. Norton, succeeding Drake McFeely, who will remain at the company as chairman. Reidhead, who first joined Norton in 1983 and is currently vp, publishing director of the College department, is Norton’s sixth and first female president in the company’s 93-year history. She will also become president and director of the National Book Company, Norton’s distribution center in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and of Liveright Publishing.
McFeely said in the announcement: “Julia Reidhead, who has made her entire publishing career here at Norton, embodies all the values we hold dear: an abiding love of books and literature, pride in and dedication to the editorial process, a commitment to innovation (in particular, a deep understanding of the new avenues that digital media have opened), and above all, a passion for our status as independent publishers. With Julia at the helm, along with a rising and stellar team of senior managers, I feel exceedingly optimistic about the future of this great publishing house.” Reidhead added: “To be joining Drake McFeely in the overall management of this firm is a huge honor and a great joy. My colleagues and I are as proud of our independence and employee-ownership as we are of publishing distinctive books and digital media. I intend to uphold these qualities as we move toward Norton’s second century.”
Grand Central Publishing’s president and publisher, Jamie Raab, and vp, editor-in-chief Deb Futter will leave the company at the end of January. Raab spent more than thirty years at GCP, the last 18 as publisher, while Futter departs after a decade — and four years as publisher of Twelve — “to pursue her next challenge.” A search for a new publisher and editor-in-chief for Grand Central is underway “and will be announced shortly.” Hachette Book Group ceo Michael Pietsch notes “this is a lot of change at once!” but still stresses “HBG’s unwavering commitment to a separate and successful GCP.”
Raab said in a statement: “I’ve had a terrific career here, and after a three-decade tenure, the time seems right to step down. It’s very tough to say farewell to colleagues and authors I admire and have loved working with, but change is always energizing, and the prospect of new adventures and opportunities is alluring. I am extremely proud of all we’ve accomplished together here at HBG, and feel absolutely confident that GCP will continue to thrive, expand and move in exciting new directions under new leadership in the years ahead.” Futter noted: “It’s been a true honor to work with extraordinary authors and colleagues during my years at GCP. The choice to leave a publishing house I’ve called home for almost a decade was extremely hard. GCP is a dynamic place to be, and I’ll miss it. I have no doubt that the immensely talented GCP team will continue to publish bestsellers and new voices with verve and success.”
Catherine Richards will join Minotaur as senior editor on March 6, reporting to Kelley Ragland. Most recently she was senior editor for fiction at Pan Macmillan UK. Minotaur publisher Andy Martin notes in the announcement that her hiring “is a unique opportunity for a global company, and one which Minotaur is pleased to have been able to take advantage of in order to secure an editorial talent like Catherine.”
Critic and author AA Gill, 62, died December 10 of complications from cancer. His agent, Ed Victor, said in a statement: “Adrian was a writer who brought courage and clarity to everything he observed, be it seeing human disaster in a refugee camp or bringing his sharply focused views on TV and food. He lived life to the full and enhanced his readers’ view of life by originality, humour and sheer brilliance as a wordsmith.”