Andy Bird will take over as ceo of Pearson, starting October 19. At that point, current ceo John Fallon will continue in the position until then, when he will step down from the board and remain as an advisor through the end of the year. Bird had been chairman of Walt Disney International most recently, and joined Pearson’s board in May. Board chair Sidney Taurel said, “Andy brings a wealth of international consumer experience, as well as significant expertise in building brands, transformational change and driving digital innovation. He is an inspirational and dynamic leader with an excellent track record of growth.”
One part of his compensation package will require shareholder approval, at a specially-called meeting, and his appointment depends upon approval. In a “co-investment opportunity, Bird will purchase $3.75 million of Pearson shares, and the company will grant a co-investment of two and half times that in shares (approximately 1.2 million shares), vesting annually over the next three calendar years.
Claire Harris has joined P.S. Literary Agency as agent. She was previously foreign rights director and agent at Foundry Literary + Media.
Philippa Donovan has been appointed literary scout for Dynamic Television, covering the US and Europe.
Geoffrey Nunberg, 75, “a linguist whose elegant essays and books explained to a general audience how English has adapted to changes in politics, popular culture and technology,” died on August 11 of glioblastoma.
The NYT looks at systemic issues faced by Black cookbook authors in particular: “At every step, the teams involved tend to be overwhelmingly white. Some Black writers say this can put them in a position of having to explain the basics of the food they’re writing about. That lack of familiarity can trickle into the recipes, too.”
In particular, co-author of Tasting Rome Kristina Gill relates her story of being “sidelined throughout the publication process and later excluded from the book’s publicity campaign.” After she contacted Clarkson Potter publisher Aaron Wehner earlier this year about her experience, “The company began an investigation into her claims.” Wehner reported by email that their findings “support your account of the repeated marginalization and disrespect you experienced during the process,” though the company is said to have “concluded in a later investigation that the behavior was not racist. Shortly after, the woman who edited ‘Tasting Rome,’ along with her supervisor, left the company.” In July it was announced that editor-in-chief Doris Cooper and executive editor Amanda Englander were leaving.
Former longtime CAA agent Pete Micelli is forming a new management and production company, reportedly with financing from hedge fund operator Steve Cohen and a few other “major investors.” Well-known agents from CAA, WME and UTA are already part of the new team. Micelli had been chief strategy officer at Entertainment One, and left in April, after more than two decades at CAA. Deadline says the working — but not actual — name for the new company was Moxie.
Lucy Ellmann‘s Ducks, Newburyport (Biblioasis/Galley Beggar Press) won the UK’s James Tait Black Prize for Fiction.