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IBPA Member Spotlight: Highlights from IBPA Publishing University 2019

Thursday, April 11, 2019   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Christopher Locke
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IBPA Publishing University 2019 in Pictures!

IBPA Publishing University 2019 has come to a close and it was a grand success! The 325 attendees, including independent publishers, author publishers, and more, convened at the Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile from Thursday, April 4 through Saturday, April 6 for a conference full of excellent networking opportunities and insightful sessions about independent publishing!

Join us as we take a look at IBPA Publishing University in pictures…

IBPA Director of Marketing & Programming Lee Wind was open for business on the morning of Thursday, April 4 for the IBPA Publishing University preconference sessions.

IBPA CEO Angela Bole welcomes the 325 attendees with opening remarks full of encouragement about the vitality of independent publishing, and helpful tips about how attendees can get the most out of their IBPA Publishing University experience.

Sourcebooks Founder and CEO Dominique Raccah gave a crowd-pleasing and inspirational speech, "Rethinking Book Publishing: Innovation and Culture 2019," as the Opening Keynote.

Sourcebooks Founder and CEO Dominique Raccah's moving speech receives a standing ovation from the crowd.

At any given time during the conference, attendees had multiple sessions from which to choose, ranging from topics about how to turn bad reviews into a positive marketing opportunity to a deep dive into all things Amazon.

Throughout the conference, attendees had the opportunity to sign up with independent publishing professionals in our "Ask The Experts" one-on-one sessions where they could seek advice for their own publishing journey, such as this IBPA member who spoke with Forte Business Consulting's Michele Cobb.

IBPA Publishing University had over three dozen sponsors, most of which had tables set up in the grand ballroom where attendees could chat with sponsor representatives. Here, NetGalley's Vice President of Business Growth & Engagement Kristina Radke talks with an attendee about NetGalley's services.

Friday, April 5 was the big evening of the 31st Annual IBPA Benjamin Franklin Awards Dinner & Ceremony where the gold winners were announced. Beforehand, guests mingled and browsed through the tables of finalists' books.

Attendees of the IBPA Benjamin Franklin Awards Ceremony enjoyed a fancy meal before the winners were announced.

Each IBPA Benjamin Franklin Awards gold winner was invited to the stage to be given a trophy and to share a few words with the audience. Here, author Katura J. Hudson accepted the award for Just Us Books' I'm a Big Sister Now, which won gold in the "Children's Picture Book (4-7 Years)" category.

At the Saturday, April 6 Keynote, four IBPA Board Members (Publishers Weekly's Seth Dellon-left, Independent Publishers Groups' Kelly Peterson-right, Burnt Cheese Press' Kathy Strahs-not pictured, and Homebound Publications' Leslie Browning-not pictured) shared their thoughts on "Defining the Current and Future Meaning of 'Publisher.'"

At the Annual Meeting & Membership Luncheon, IBPA Board Chair Brooke Warner gave a lively speech about IBPA's overall mission and successes.

During the Annual Meeting & Membership Luncheon, IBPA said a fond farewell to five Board Members who have come to the end of their terms, including i30 Media's Ian Lamont (pictured), and members voted in five new and two incumbent Board Members.

On Thursday, April 4, some members enjoyed a night on the town at Andy's Jazz Club! These outings provided members another opportunity to network in a more casual setting.

On Sunday, April 7, attendees came together at one last excursion for a tour of The American Writers Museum.

And no attendee left the conference without one of these fancy swag bags full of free items. Only those who attended the conference know its full contents!

A very big thank you to all the attendees, the speakers, and the sponsors for making this another grand IBPA Publishing University! We look forward to seeing you all again at next year's conference in Redondo Beach, California on April 3-4, 2020 (with preconference sessions on April 2)!

Share your own publishing news with the IBPA community! Send news about events or accomplishments to Keep in mind that we reserve Spotlights for major news (such as, you’re a cookbook author who won a national cooking competition), unique news (such as, you wrote a book about cycling and now you’re riding a bike across the U.S. for your book tour), or human interest stories (such as, you visit shelters every weekend to read books to the dogs and cats there).

Though launching a new book isn’t the focus of our Spotlights articles, IBPA is happy to share that exciting news on social media. Please contact with the launch date, your book cover, your book title, a link to where readers can learn more about your book, and your Twitter handle.

For good news in general about your publishing company (your book received a wonderful editorial review, you have an upcoming speaking engagement, etc.), use the hashtag #IBPAmemberGoodNews on Twitter and IBPA will amplify your good news!

Whether you have news or not, all of us at IBPA are cheering you on!

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