As the ongoing pandemic continued to present challenges to university presses—impacting parent institutions, offices, authors, warehouses, vendor partners, and audiences—Association of University Presses (AUPresses) members looked to colleagues to address common concerns. By hosting 30 webinars and hangouts (less formal conversation panels) over the past year—after supporting a record-breaking 25 virtual events during the pandemic’s first year—Communications Program Manager Kate Kolendo, Program Coordinator Angelica DeVoe, and the rest of the Association staff provided invaluable opportunities for press directors and members of other professional interest groups in our community to share ideas and develop new strategies.
- Hangouts organized by AUPresses committees considered pandemic-specific issues, including burnout and virtual exhibits, as well as ebook accessibility, PR media and monitoring tools, and author outreach.
- A series of virtual conversations for press directors around equity, justice, and inclusion work continued. The Equity, Justice, and Inclusion (EJI) Committee organized and hosted 9 “Activating Directors in EJI Work” sessions over the past 12 months, addressing topics ranging from the C4DISC Antiracism Toolkit for Organizations to neurodiversity.
- Read more about these and the full slate of professional development events supported by AUPresses during the past year.
During 2020-2021, Business Manager Kim Miller had tenaciously applied for and received two loans from the federal Payroll Protection Program for small businesses as well as repayment forgiveness for the first loan. During 2021-2022, she secured forgiveness of the second loan amount, thereby providing even greater benefit to the Association’s administrative operations.
The “Great Resignation” phenomenon, noted across many industries including our own, struck close to home for the AUPresses Central Office during the second half of 2021, as we said goodbye to longtime Membership and Events Director Susan Patton and Program Coordinator Angelica DeVoe With the recent arrivals of Administrative Coordinator Darshna Patel and Virtual Events Coordinator Alexis Fagan, we look forward to continuing to support the work of the Association with a replenished staff cohort.