Simon & Schuster in the US has promoted Jonathan Karp to president and c.e.o. following the unexpected death of Carolyn Reidy earlier this month.
Effective immediately, Karp will oversee all of Simon & Schuster’s domestic and international publishing operations. He was most recently president and publisher of Simon & Schuster Adult Publishing, which includes Atria Books, Avid Reader Press, Gallery Books, Scribner, Simon & Schuster and associated sub-imprints and lines.
ViacomCBS president and c.e.o. Bob Bakish said: “Jon embodies the values that Carolyn instilled at Simon & Schuster, and he is well suited to guide the continued growth and evolution of this incredible global brand.
“Jon was a key member of the leadership team that consistently delivered strong results for Simon & Schuster, while expanding its readership across genres and formats. He is a highly skilled executive who is deeply committed to the collaborative process of publishing, and will no doubt build upon a storied legacy of success.”
Karp, who is 56, joined S&S in June 2010, going on to oversee the publication of titles such as Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson, What Happened by Hillary Clinton and Fear by Bob Woodward. He was named president of Adult Publishing in 2018. Before joining S&S, he was publisher, editor-in-chief and founder of Twelve, an imprint of the Hachette Book Group.
He said: “For 96 years, Simon & Schuster has been the gold standard for publishing books that satisfy and illuminate readers, and I am grateful for the opportunity to inherit this great legacy. We will continue to build on the strong foundation that Carolyn Reidy and the leadership team have in place to publish books we believe in and love.”
In a note to staff, Karp said the publisher's slate of books for 2020 “is one of our strongest in years” and went on to pay tribute to his predecessor.
He said: “Over the past 10 years, Carolyn Reidy has shown me how an executive communicates and leads—candidly, firmly, warmly, attentively, and generously. I owe Carolyn a debt I will never be able to repay to her, but I will do everything I can to pay it forward by sustaining her standards and humanity through my work with you. We will maintain our culture of straightforward and creative collaboration, in which anyone from every corner of our organization can suggest any idea. Together, we will honor and uphold our nearly hundred-year tradition of innovation and excellence, with laughter and learning along the way.
“In 1989, when I applied for my first publishing job as an editorial assistant, I did so because I loved books and thought a publishing house would be an interesting place to work. After 31 years, I still feel the same way. We’re in it for the books, and the books will show us the way.”
Ian Chapman, c.e.o. and publisher of S&S UK and International, commented: "I am delighted at the news of Jon’s appointment. What a wonderful moment for him and for us all at S&S around the world.
"Jon and I have worked together for 10 years. I so wish that the circumstances could have been different, but I am enormously excited to be working for—and with—him as we continue to develop our ambitious plans for growth in the UK, India and Australia.
"Jon’s love of authors and their work is at the heart of everything that he does and reflects our own passion. Carolyn’s global publishing vision, along with the continued strengthening of our local lists, will continue unabated with Jon’s support."