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Director’s Desk: An Open Letter to Members

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by Angela Bole, CEO, Independent Book Publishers Association —

Angela Bole

Dear Friends,

Welcome to my first Director’s Desk column as executive director of IBPA!

I’m delighted to be taking up this new position. Through my previous engagement with the Book Industry Study Group, I had the honor of working with both Jan Nathan and Florrie Binford Kichler. It’s a true privilege to transition to a role that allows me to carry on their longstanding, first-class efforts.

Now the largest book trade association in the United States, IBPA has been leading and serving the independent publishing community for almost 30 years. Throughout this time, the association has amassed an impressive membership filled with people and organizations striving daily to uphold the highest publishing standards; to pursue editorial, design, and production excellence; and, most important, to create viable and sustainable businesses that produce works of lasting value.

These members, in association with an excellent board of directors firmly committed to IBPA’s mission, a highly professional staff, and an array of outstanding partners, assure me that IBPA is well positioned to seize opportunities in the challenging landscape that surrounds us.

Going forward, I hope to develop significant new programs for IBPA members that take advantage of current developments in how content can be created, produced, and sold. I hope, also, to strengthen the current programs so they will reach more members and, therefore, have a greater impact on the industry. And I intend to pay special attention to the always inclusive nature of IBPA membership and to expanding the organization’s commitment to excellence and high standards.

In the meantime, there’s so much to learn. To do so, I will take a page from Ernest Hemingway, who said, “I like to listen. I have learned a lot from listening carefully.” I invite you, the readers of IBPA’s flagship magazine, to consider my door open. Please contact me at angela@ibpa-online.org to discuss your ideas for strengthening the independent publishing community. There are few things we could do alone that couldn’t be done better together, or, to use Helen Keller’s words, “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.”

More to come,

Angela Bole

A Brief Bio

AngelaBoleJust before I became IBPA’s executive director, I 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, I served for two years as BISG’s associate director and two years as its marketing and communications manager. I also serve as treasurer on the board of directors of IDPF, the International Digital Publishing Forum.

I love to learn and think there’s always more to know. My formal education led to English Literature and Gender Studies degrees from Indiana University–Bloomington and a Masters Degree in Book Publishing from New York University. My informal education is never-ending.

As a member of the Women’s Media Group, a New York–based nonprofit association of women who have achieved prominence in the many fields of media, I have been able to meet and mingle with some truly amazing women doing some truly cutting-edge work. People inspire me.

When I’m not working, I am outdoors as much as I can be. For five years I served as chair of Inner City Outings in New York City, a Sierra Club community outreach program that provides opportunities for urban kids to explore the natural world. And for the past 12 months I have been leading wilderness trips on the weekends with Discover Outdoors (discoveroutdoors.com).

Also, I am a certified Wilderness First Responder and licensed New York State Wilderness Guide. If necessary, I could set your broken femur in a traction splint.

What I’m looking forward to, though, is meeting you—ideally, each of you—in person, online, and/or over the phone in the coming weeks and months.

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