Director’s Desk: Celebrating Judith Appelbaum

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November 2014
by Angela Bole

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Judith Appelbaum, editor of IBPA's Independent magazine

Judith Appelbaum, editor of IBPA’s Independent magazine and author of HOW TO GET HAPPILY PUBLISHED: A COMPLETE AND CANDID GUIDE, now in it’s fifth edition.

At IBPA, we celebrate our community members’ ability and willingness to help each other achieve and succeed. There is strength in numbers and together your voices resonate with a passion and commitment to independent publishing that is inspiring to hear.

Perhaps nowhere is this more apparent than in the pages of this magazine, IBPA’s Independent.

Along with expert research and writing from resident reporter Linda Carlson, the Independent has long featured articles and perspectives from IBPA members both large and small who work in all facets of the publishing industry. First published more than 30 years ago, it remains one of the only magazines to focus exclusively on issues of import to indie publishers and self-published authors. It is an institution in its own right.

And the beating heart of this institution is the magazine’s longstanding editor, Judith Appelbaum.

On September 18, I was honored to present Judith with a prestigious industry accolade: the Book Industry Study Group’s Lifetime Service Award. This award is given in recognition of an individual’s outstanding work over the course of a career, and it was presented to Judith during BISG’s annual meeting in New York City.

In addition to all the great work Judith does for IBPA, she has been a respected member of BISG’s board of directors for decades. She has also served on BISG’s executive committee and as secretary of the organization, and she chaired its rights committee and its publications committee. I serve on BISG’s board of directors too, and was thrilled to be able to introduce Judith before she walked to the podium to accept her award. It felt good to honor one of IBPA’s own, as well as a personal mentor and friend.

I met Judith nearly ten years ago when I began my career in New York City as the marketing and communications coordinator for BISG. She took me out to lunch and we talked all things publishing. I knew as much about publishing then as you’d expect a newbie to know, but I was eager to learn and she encouraged me to do so. Ten years later, I know a little more, but I’m still eager to learn. And Judith encouraging me to do so.

When you ask anyone about working with Judith Appelbaum, they inevitably comment on her ability to improve any project.

“I am absolutely thrilled to hear this,” said MaryAnn IBPA board member and publisher at Bright Ring Publishing, Inc., when she heard Judith would be presented BISG’s Lifetime Service Award. “Judith has always been delight to work with, and always improves whatever articles I have submitted for the Independent. I enjoy working her so much and have complete admiration for her and for her character.”

This is how it is to work with Judith. You know that the standard will be high and the work will be much improved result. You also know you’ll be encouraged to think deeply and act considerately. In the end, your work—and character—will be better for it.

And what could be better than this? So, please join me in congratulating Judith Appelbaum on receiving the Book Industry Study Group’s Lifetime Service Award. I, for one, am thrilled that it provides an excuse to thank her, as well, for her outstanding years of service to IBPA.

May we all set high standards and remain eager to learn.


About the Author:

Bole,Angela(HeadShot1)Just before Angela Bole became IBPA’s Executive Director, she was Deputy Executive Director of the Book Industry Study Group, Inc. (BISG), which fosters conversation and consensus across all sectors of the book business. Before that, Angela served for two years as BISG’s Associate Director and two years as its Marketing and Communications Manager. Angela also serves as Treasurer on the Board of Directors of IDPF, the International Digital Publishing Forum.

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