Leadership Strategies in Book Publishing
2015 Faculty


Robert Baensch
President, Baensch International Group Ltd.

Robert E. Baensch is a Fellow and Director of Publishing Programs, the SUNY Global Center, New York. He is also the president of the Baensch International Group Ltd. and specializes in international publishing, start-up and turnaround management. He served eleven years as the Associate Professor of Publishing and former director of the New York University’s Center for Publishing. He was the Senior VP for marketing for Rizzoli International Publications, Inc., and, prior to that, was the Director for publishing at the American Institute of Physics where he was responsible for over 60 journals, a book program, print publishing, and database online information services. Previously, Baensch was the Vice President-Marketing of Macmillan Publishing Company and also directed the Macmillan Software Company and English as a Second Language Multimedia Program. He is currently on the board of the Consumers Union and serves as editor of the book,The Publishing Industry in China, and of the journal Publishing Research Quarterly. Baensch received a B.A. degree from the Johns Hopkins University and an S.E.P. from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business.

Katherine Brown
Chief Operating Officer, Yale University Press

Katherine Brown is Chief Operating Officer of the Yale University Press, a leading scholarly, reference, art, and trade publisher based in New Haven, CT and London. Previously, Brown was Managing Director of Media and Telecom Group for Bank of America Merill Lynch where she was responsible for large cap media and entertainment industry coverage. Earlier in her career, she was Senior Vice President of Finance for Time Warner Inc. and some of her work includes defense against Icahn’s hostile approach, Google’s $1 billion investment in AOL, sale of Warner Books and Warner Music, acquisition of Adelphia Communications and restructuring of the Time Warner Entertainment Partnership. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Brown earned a B.A. from Brown University and an M.A. From Stanford University.

Kristin Fassler
Vice President and Director of Marketing, Ballantine, Bantam Dell

Kristin Fassler is Vice President and Director of Marketing at the Random House division of Penguin Random House. In her role at Ballantine Bantam Dell, she oversees the creation and implementation of the consumer marketing and branding strategies for over 200 fiction and nonfiction titles annually, including campaigns for bestselling authors such as Diana Gabaldon, Debbie Macomber, George R.R. Martin, Lee Child, and Tess Gerritsen. In addition, Kristin teaches the Book Marketing and Branding Course at New York University’s Master of Science in Publishing program.

Carol Fitzgerald
President, The Book Report Network (TBRN)

Carol Fitzgerald is the President of The Book Report Network (TBRN), a group of Internet sites about books and authors that have become the gathering places for a large and devoted community of book lovers since 1996. Programming is organized by demographic at,,, and and by special interest at,, and On each site the goal is to encourage discoverability of books and authors. The design on the backend of TBRN has been developed to allow for books and authors to be “shelved and shared” where they can be seen by all interested audiences. In addition, the company’s Authors on the Web division provides website design and development and consulting services for authors and publishers. To date, the company has built websites for more than 230 authors and agents including Nelson DeMille, Debbie Macomber, David Baldacci, and Writers House, as well as a host of debut and mid-list authors. The company maintains more than 100 author websites. Prior to founding The Book Report Network, Carol worked at Conde Nast for 17 years. She is a graduate of Fordham University with a B.A. in Communications.

Dick Foster
Lecturer, Yale School of Management; Executive-in-Residence, Yale Entrepreneurial Institute; Venture Partner, Lux Capital

Dick Foster is a Lecturer in Management at the Yale School of Management. He is also Special Assistant to the President for Healthcare Innovation.   Foster is an emeritus director of McKinsey & Company, Inc. At McKinsey he was a Director and Senior Partner. While at McKinsey he founded several practices including the technology and innovation practice, the healthcare practice and the private equity practice. From 1995 to 1998 he led McKinsey’s worldwide knowledge development. Foster has written two bestselling books on innovation, capital formation, and capital destruction. In addition to his teaching responsibilities at the Yale School of Management, he is a member of the Board and the Executive Committees of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and the W. M. Keck Foundation, and the Trust Company of the West. He is also a member   Co-Chair of the President’s Circle of the National Academies and a member of the Dean’s Advisory Committee at the Yale School of Medicine. He was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences in 2008. He received his Chemical Engineering B.E. from Yale University, and earned an M.A. and doctorate in Engineering & Applied Science also from Yale.

Susan Gibbons
University Librarian, Yale University

Susan Gibbons held library positions at Indiana University and University of Massachusetts, Amherst before moving to the University of Rochester in 2000, where she worked as the director of digital library initiatives before moving into administration. Gibbons was appointed in 2008 as the Vice Provost and the Andrew H. and Janet Dayton Neilly Dean of River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester. Gibbons is well known in the library world, most significantly for the library user studies at Rochester she has undertaken since 2004. In collaboration with an anthropologist, she determined how faculty and students do their academic work, find information, and make use of the physical and technological resources offered by the libraries. The results have led to service, collections and physical space changes in the River Campus Libraries designed to better meet user needs. Gibbons earned an M.L.S. and M.A. in history from Indiana University, professional M.B.A. from the University of Massachusetts and a doctorate in higher education administration from the University of Rochester.

George Gibson
Publishing Director, Bloomsbury Publishing, New York

George Gibson is Publishing Director of Bloomsbury USA and Publisher and Editorial Director for the Bloomsbury and Walker adult lists. Previously, he was President and Publisher of Walker & Company, a family-owned independent publisher that was acquired by Bloomsbury PLC in 2005. Gibson began his career in the book business in 1972 as a clerk at The Old Corner Bookstore in Boston, which was then the oldest continuously running bookstore in America. After working as assistant to the General Manager of Little, Brown’s trade division, he joined publisher David R. Godine as Assistant Sales Manager, and overthe next 11 years became, in turn, Sales Director, Sales and Marketing Director, and added responsibility for Subsidiary Rights. Gibson then joined Addison-Wesley’s trade division, first as Senior Editor and then in Marketing and Subsidiary Rights. He then became Acting CEO of Consortium Book Sales & Distribution in St. Paul, Minnesota, a distribution company for smaller publishers, and consulted to the programs to assist small presses of the Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Fund and the Mellon Foundation.

David Godine
Founder and President, David R. Godine, Inc.

David R. Godine attended Dartmouth College, where he received his first introduction to typography and the history of the book. After a stint in the Army and a degree from Harvard’s School of Education, he spent two years working for the printer and artist Leonard Baskin before starting his own printing operation in an abandoned cow barn in Brookline. After five years, he gave up printing to devote his energies to full-time publishing and has continued to produce books of both intellectual and physical quality for forty years. His company issues between 30 and 40 new titles a year in a variety of fields. Its special interests include children’s books, the history of typography and graphic design, foreign literature in translation, art and architecture, poetry, and word usage. Between the Godine lists and the titles he absorbed from John Martin’s Black Sparrow Press, he has around 500 titles in print and reprints around 50 every year. 

Bruce Harris
Publishing Consultant, Bruce Harris Books

Bruce Harris began his independent consultancy practice in 2004 after a forty-year career in publishing, most recently as Publisher-COO of Workman Publishing. At Workman, he was associated with publishing over 15 New York Times bestsellers, including 1,000 Places to See Before You Die. Prior to joining Workman, he was Executive Vice President of Random House, Inc. and President of its trade sales and marketing division. From 1980-1988, he served as Vice President and Director of Publishing for Crown Publishers. He is also the Founding Publisher of Harmony Books, where he published Douglas Adams, Maurice Sendak, Martin Amis, and Chuck Berry. As a consultant he has worked for both authors and publishers, including Dr. Nathan Myhrvold, author of the six volume work Modernist Cuisine He has also consulted for many companies including A.A. Knopf,, Hyperion Books, The Taunton Press, and Time-Warner. He received a B.A. from New York University.

Nigel Holmes
Principal, Explanation Graphics

Born in England, Nigel Holmes studied illustration at the Royal College of Art in London and then freelanced for magazines and newspapers for 12 years before coming to America in 1978 to work for Time magazine. He became graphics director at Time, where his pictorial explanations of complex subjects helped readers understand otherwise abstract numbers and difficult scientific concepts. In 1994, he founded his own business, Explanation Graphics, and has worked with a variety of clients including American Express, The Smithsonian Institution, and United Healthcare. He also does graphics and illustrations for publications such as Scientific American, National Geographic and The New York Times. Holmes has written seven books about (or including lots of) information graphics, including The Book of Everything (2012), and Instant Expert (2014), both published by Lonely Planet.

Michael Jacobs
President and CEO, Abrams Books

Michael Jacobs started in publishing as a page in the main branch of the Oakland (CA) Public Library and went on to work at Bookpeople, an employee-owned distributor of small and independent press books. His professional track took him to Penguin USA, where he started as a sales representative based in the Pacific Northwest and later became President of the Viking Penguin division and a member of the board of directors. He then served as Executive Vice President of Simon and Schuster’s Trade division, Publisher of the Free Press, and Senior Vice President in Scholastic’s trade book group. While at Scholastic, he orchestrated the publishing, marketing, sales, and distribution of the most successful books in publishing history – the first five Harry Potter volumes. Jacobs joined Abrams in 2004, where he oversaw the publication of the best-selling Wimpy Kid series. He is on the board of directors of the Academy of American Poets and is an Eli Whitney scholar at Yale University.

Rick Joyce
Chief Marketing Officer, Perseus Books Group

Rick Joyce is the Chief Marketing Officer of the Perseus Books Group, where he has been involved in growth and digital strategy development since 2005. Joyce is a co-creator of Constellation, the complete digital solution for independent publishers, now serving over 340 publishing clients around the world. He was the force behind the Book: The Sequel at BEA 2009 (the publishing experiment that crashed a book in all formats in 48 from the show floor), the pioneering transmedia sensation Cathy’s Book, and enhanced projects like JFK: 50 Days and Roots: The Enhanced Edition. Joyce is a veteran of 20+ years in media, as a partner at Accenture, VP of Marketing at ASCAP, and a strategy consultant at Booz Allen. He has a BA from Dartmouth, an MBA from Columbia, an MFA from The Actors Studio Drama School, and 5 children.

Marcus Leaver
Chief Executive Officer, The Quarto Group Inc.

Marcus Leaver has been Chief Executive Officer of The Quarto Group Inc. since December 2012, having joined the board as Chief Operating Officer in May 2012. Prior to Quarto, he worked in the USA from 2005, latterly as President of Sterling Publishing, a subsidiary of Barnes & Noble, the leading bricks-and-mortar bookseller in the US. Before living and working in the US, he worked in London for Chrysalis Group plc, a London Stock Exchange-listed media company, latterly as CEO of Chrysalis Books Group, from 2002, and prior to that Corporate Development Director and in a number of different general management roles, from 1998. Marcus graduated from the University of East Anglia with a degree in Art History, and received his MBA from London Business School.

Martin Levin
Counsel, Cowan, Liebowitz, P.C., and former CEO, Times-Mirror Book Company

Martin Levin is Counsel at Cowan, Liebowitz & Latman, a New York City law firm specializing in intellectual property, international co-ventures, mergers and acquisitions, and editorial rights and development. Levin began his career in publishing at Grosset & Dunlap, where he would serve as senior vice president and board member in the early 1960s. He later joined Times-Mirror Book Company in 1966, and retired as president and CEO at the end of 1983. In June 1999, Levin received the highest award for lifetime achievement in publishing given by the Association of American Publishers. He has been a consultant to the Ford Foundation on book publishing in India and was chairman of Franklin Book Programs. In his law practice, Levin represents sellers and buyers of businesses, and authors. In addition to his regular practice, Levin teaches publishing law at New York Law School. Levin graduated from Temple University with a B.S. in 1949 and from New York Law School with a J.D. in 1983.

Nihar Malaviya
EVP and Chief Operating Officer, Penguin Random House USA

Nihar Malaviya is responsible for Strategy, Analytics & Program Development for the Sales, Operations & Digital departments and has direct oversight for the company’s combined corporate technology teams and for the Random House operations teams. His key responsibility is to create new capabilities required for Random House to be successful in future - ranging from dynamic pricing, consumer insights and marketing, to vendor managed inventory.  At Random House, Malaviya has worked on a variety of corporate functions ranging from sales, technology, operations, supply chain, production and lead numerous projects ranging from digital strategy, eBook pricing, technology infrastructure consolidation, supply chain redesign and production vendor re-negotiations. Before entering the world of publishing, Malaviya spent 7 years on Wall Street at the intersection of credit & market risk management and technology.  Malaviya has an MBA in Finance & Marketing from the Stern School of Business and a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and is a CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) charterholder.

Leigh Marchant
Vice President and Director of Marketing, Random House, Spiegel & Grau

Leigh Marchant is Vice President and Director of Marketing for Random House and Spiegel & Grau where she oversees the development and implementation of integrated marketing campaigns for the imprint’s non-fiction and literary fiction list. Prior to her time at Random House, she was a Coop Account Manager in the Merchandising Department at Barnes & Noble. She has also worked in marketing and publicity at Oxford University Press, the Perseus Books Group, and Harcourt. She earned her MBA from New York University’s Stern School of Business and holds an undergraduate degree from Cornell University.

Liisa McCloy-Kelley
Vice President and Director, eBook Development & Innovation, Penguin Random House

Liisa McCloy-Kelley is responsible for eBook specifications and leading the charge as Penguin Random House works to create innovative new products and drive new functionality for the eBook marketplace. She has been with the company for nearly 25 years and leads a team of more than 30 developers, designers and producers. Since 2000, she has worked on a variety of eBook standards with numerous organizations and serves on the Board of Directors of the IDPF. She has spoken at many industry conferences and has taught at Wellesley and at the New York University Publishing Center.


Kirsty Melville
President and Publisher, Andrews McMeel Universal

Kirsty Melville is President and Publisher of Andrews McMeel Universal, a company that gives voice to storytellers, artists and creators.  Andrews McMeel Universal discovers, nurtures, and distributes the most noteworthy creative talents of our time through a variety of comic features, books, calendars, and greeting cards. Under Melville’s leadership, the publishing division has met with great success, establishing AMU as a leader in humor and inspiration with many books and calendars that have been New York Times bestsellers.  A native of Australia, she was the founding publisher of Simon & Schuster Australia. In 1994, she moved to the U.S. as Vice President and Publisher for Ten Speed Press and led in its transformation from a niche publisher into an internationally recognized, award-winning publisher. She departed Ten Speed to work as Publisher for San Francisco’s University Games, was named Publisher and Executive Vice President of Andrews McMeel Publishing in 2005, and was named President and Publisher in 2009.

Greg Miller
Managing Director, Greenhill & Co.

At Greenhill, an independent global investment banking firm focused on mergers and acquisitions and listed on the New York Stock Exchange, Miller serves clients in the media industry, with a particular focus on companies involved in publishing and information services. Prior to joining Greenhill in 2004, he was a Managing Director at Credit Suisse, where he worked for more than 14 years and also focused on the media sector. Over the course of his career, Miller has advised a wide range of consumer and professional media companies worldwide on more than 100 merger & acquisition and capital raising transactions. In 2004, Miller launched Gregory R. Miller & Co., a publisher of high quality books about contemporary art, architecture, and design. He earned a BA in English from the University of Notre Dame and a JD from Yale Law School.

Craig Mod
Advisor and Contributor, Medium; Publishing startup advisor and investor; former Designer, Flipboard; Writer

Craig Mod is a writer and designer who has been involved with publishing and startups for the last decade. He is a regular contributor to The Message, and an advisor to Medium, SmartNews, Oyster, and other publishing startups. He was previously a product designer at Flipboard. He splits his time between New York and Tokyo. He speaks frequently on the future of books, publishing, and digital content design. Mod is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania’s Digital Media Design (Fine Arts and Computer Science) program.

Ed Nawotka
Founder and Editor-in-Chief, Publishing Perspectives

Ed Nawotka is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives, an online magazine for the international publishing industry that has been called “the BBC of the book world.” Prior to launching Publishing Perspectives, he worked as the book columnist for Bloomberg News and daily news editor for Publishers Weekly. He has also served as literary director of the Texas Book Festival, as a judge for various book awards, and has worked as a foreign correspondent, bookseller, literary magazine editor, and advertising copywriter. As a journalist, he has reported from more than 30 countries. He continues to be a widely published freelance writer - his reviews, essays, and reporting appear regularly in publications across the U.S., as well as overseas. He has appeared as a guest on various television and radio programs, including those on NPR, PRI, BBC, and C-SPAN.

Carolyn Pittis
VP, Operations, Sterling Publishing; Managing Director, Welman Digital LLC, NYC

Carolyn Pittis speaks frequently at media industry conferences and teaches in the Columbia, Yale, and New York University publishing programs. Her private change management consulting business focuses on digital strategy, organizational design, operational execution and business process reengineering, analytics and on the application of simple theories and models to solve today’s digital business problems. Prior to launching her private change management consulting business, Pittis was most recently Senior Vice President, Publishing Transformation of HarperCollins Publishers Worldwide where she was responsible for leading internal publishing teams to develop new capabilities and processes that drive editorial and marketing excellence. In her 22 years at HarperCollins, Pittis played a wide variety of key executive roles, including positions in marketing, web development, consumer sales forecasting, sales administration, digital asset management, business development, managing editorial, and change management. Prior to her current position, she led the company’s Author Services group, in which she focused on building new ways to support authors and agents in today’s marketplace. In 2009, Pittis was named as one of the Top 50 Women in Book Publishing by Book Business magazine.  She holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree in history from Colgate University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, respectively, and is a 2004 graduate of the Executive Information Technology Management program at Columbia University.

Mark Polizzotti
Publisher and Editor-in-Chief, The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Mark Polizzotti directs the publications program at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. His books include Revolution of the Mind: The Life of André Breton (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1995; revised ed., 2009), which was a finalist for the PEN/Martha Albrand Award for Best Nonfiction; the collaborative novel S. (1991); Luis Buñuel’s Los Olvidados (British Film Institute, 2006); and Bob Dylan: Highway 61 Revisited (Bloomsbury, 2006). His articles and reviews have appeared in The New Republic, The Wall Street Journal, ARTnews, The Nation, Parnassus, Partisan Review, Bookforum, and elsewhere, and he has also translated more than forty books from the French, including works by Gustave Flaubert, Patrick Modiano, Marguerite Duras, André Breton, Raymond Roussel, and Jean Echenoz.

David Wan
Chief Executive Officer, Harvard Business Publishing

David A. Wan is the chief executive officer of Harvard Business Publishing. He joined the company in July 2002. Wan is an operating executive with over thirty years of diversified experience in publishing, financial services, and consulting. He has operated on a global scale in both consumer and educational publishing. Harvard Business Publishing pursues a mission to “Improve the Practice of Management and Its Impact in a Changing World” through publications and multiple content delivery platforms that serve three markets: academic, corporate, and individual managers. The company’s operating groups–Higher Education, Corporate Learning, and Harvard Business Review Group– produce a variety of print and digital products including:  Harvard Business Review,, HBR Press Books, Harvard Business School Cases, Core Curriculum as well as events (including sponsored webinars), and online learning (Harvard ManageMentor, online courses, and simulations). Formerly, Mr. Wan was president of the Penguin Group, the global consumer book publishing division of Pearson, where he was responsible for approximately $1.2 billion in revenue from three primary operating divisions in thirteen countries. A native of New York City, he holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA in engineering and applied science from Yale University.  Mr. Wan is a member of the board of governors of the Yale University Press.

Amy Wrzesniewski
Professor of Organizational Behavior, Yale School of Management

Amy Wrzesniewski is Professor of Organizational Behavior at Yale School of Management. She earned her B.A. in Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania magna cum laude with highest honors and her M.A. and Ph.D. in Organizational Psychology from the University of Michigan. Her current research, which has been published in a variety of academic journals, involves studying how employees shape their tasks, interactions, and relationships with others in the workplace to change both their work identity and the meaning of the job. She has engaged in research projects with IBM, Google, Sun Microsystems, the United States Military Academy at West Point, the University of Michigan Hospital System, Ness Technologies, and Burt’s Bees. Wrzesniewski spent the 2012-2013 academic year on the faculty of The Wharton School of Business at The University of Pennsylvania. Currently, she teaches Organizational Behavior courses in the MBA and Executive MBA programs at the Yale School of Management.