BookMachine reveals editorial board changes to enhance diversity

BookMachine reveals editorial board changes to enhance diversity

BookMachine has announced a new editorial board, with some former members stepping down to make way for change, to better reflect the diversity it hopes to see in the industry.

Online publishing community BookMachine was founded in 2010 and has hundreds of members. In 2017 it also launched an events and marketing agency specialised in the publishing industry.

In a series of changes to its editorial board, it welcomes Rik Ubhi (Zed Books), Emmanuel Kolade (Shulph), Magdalene Abraha (Jacaranda Books) and Linda Secondari (Studiolo Secondari). The team of six expert publishing professionals will be curating BookMachine's 2021 events programme along with events programmer Suzanne Kavanagh.

The editorial board steer the direction of BookMachine’s virtual events, curate the weekly blog and provide its online publishing community with knowledge and "thought leadership" to help support career progression.

Ubhi, Kolade, Abraha and Secondari will join Ken Jones (Circular Software) and Louise Harvey née Newton (Little, Brown) who have been on the board for a number of years.

Sophie O’Rourke (emc design), Emma Barnes (Bibliocloud), Julia Garvey (BESA), Claire Maxwell (Maxwell PR) and Abbie Headon (Abbie Headon Publishing Services) will no longer sit on the board.

Laura Summers, co-founder of BookMachine, explained: "We want to make sure that our events, training and content reflect what really impacts publishing professionals in their day-to-day work. As a group we felt that we did not have a sufficient diversity of backgrounds, experience and ideas to do this as well as we’d like. After thinking hard about what kind of a team would best represent the industry and bring fresh ideas, some of the previous team stood down in order to allow change to happen. We are incredibly grateful to them for this and for their support and expertise over the years and very much hope to stay in close contact with them."
She added: "As well as organising events and training courses that inspire and educate publishing professionals, we want to be a representation of what international publishing actually looks like. I’m really excited to get started on the 2021 programme, with this brilliant team of publishing pros."

In 2020 BookMachine also announced the opening of international membership and New York-based Secondari is the first board member to be based outside the UK. She runs her own design studio but was previously creative director at Oxford University Press where she managed a large international design team spanning New York, Toronto, Oxford, and Delhi.

The 2021 events programme from BookMachine will be programmed in autumn 2020 and announced in January 2021.