After a distinguished career in publishing, University of Michigan Press Director Phil Pochoda will be (technically) retiring September 1.
Over the past decade, Pochoda took the Press from being a publisher concentrated on traditional delivery of books to being an innovator in the field. Virtually every book the Press now produces is available to read or hear in a multitude of ways, from traditional words on paper to a variety of electronic, ebook and audio formats. Over a thousand back and front list titles are now also available electronically for sale, for rent, or for free viewing. The Press continues to break ground in new areas ranging from innovative digital partnerships and products, such as its work with the HathiTrust and its digitalculturebooks program with the University of Michigan Library, to the ways in which it reaches potential readers.
Prior to joining the Press, Pochoda was associate director and editorial director of the University Press of New England; editorial director of Anchor Books and Dial Press at Doubleday; and vice president at Simon & Schuster while publisher and editor in chief of Prentice Hall Press.
But while he is technically leaving the Press, Pochoda will continue to shape those new directions. Over the next year, he will be serving as a consultant to the UM Library and its MPublishing division, of which the Press is a part, helping to set a new course for scholarly publishing during the market’s continuing transition to digital readership. He will also be a fellow at the Humanities Institute during its year of digital humanities.
Pochoda has written and lectured widely on many topics in the area of digital scholarly communication, and recently edited the Journal of Electronic Publishing special issue “Reimagining the University Press.”
“I’m honored to have been part of the successes and path-breaking work the Press has taken on over the past 10 years, and I look forward to the exciting new challenges to come,” Pochoda said.
A directorate will take over interim leadership of the Press, composed of Karen Hill, associate director/digital manager of the Press; Mike Kehoe, assistant director/sales and marketing; and Kelly Sippell, director of the English as a Second Language program. Working closely with Maria Bonn, Associate University Librarian for Publishing and Tom Dwyer, University of Michigan Press editor-in-chief, the group will develop a strategic plan that will be used to guide the search for a new director.
“Our innovative digital efforts and our strong print publishing program are models for scholarly publishing at a modern university press,” Bonn said. “Phil Pochoda was instrumental in making the Press a leader in that regard, and we consider ourselves lucky to have his ongoing guidance after his retirement. The new directorate is made up of leaders with extensive experience in traditional and digital publishing and a commitment to the Press’ new digital efforts, and we look forward to continued innovation in both areas.”
The University of Michigan Press is a unit of MPublishing at the University of Michigan Library.