Previewing the AUPresses 2020 Annual Meeting
The Association of University Presses 2020 Virtual Annual Meeting will be held next month, with several sessions offered each weekday—except Wednesdays—from June 15 to June 26. As always, the conference will bring mission-driven scholarly publishing professionals together to network and share their experiences, ideas, and knowledge on a variety of topics.
The 2020 in-person meeting planned for Seattle was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The 2020 Annual Meeting Program Committee, chaired by Laurie Matheson (Illinois), quickly worked to transition many planned sessions to virtual. Thanks to these efforts, the tradition of the Association’s annual gathering of the university press publishing community will continue as it has since 1928.
The scheduled plenaries reflect the Association’s continuing commitment to equity, justice, and inclusion and link the meeting to what would have been its host region:
- On June 15, opening plenary speakers Niigaan Sinclair (Anishinaabe)—an award-winning writer, editor, and activist who is currently an associate professor of Native Studies at the University of Manitoba—and Cutcha Risling Baldy (Hupa, Yurok, Karuk)—cofounder of the Native Women’s Collective and chair of the Native Studies department at Humboldt State University—will consider the topic “Give It Back: Publishing and Native Sovereignty.”
- Also on June 15, attendees will be greeted by Ken Workman (Duwamish), the great-great-great-great-grandson of Chief Si’ahl, for whom Seattle is named, as well as remarks on the topic “Never Again Is Now: Lessons from the WWII Japanese American Incarceration” from Tom Ikeda, founding Executive Director of Densho, former General Manager in the Multimedia Publishing Group at Microsoft Corporation, and a sansei (third generation Japanese American) born and raised in Seattle.
- The conference will conclude on June 26 with a plenary address from Ralina Joseph—scholar-in-residence at the Northwest African American Museum as well as professor of Communication and founding director of the Center for Communication, Difference, and Equity at the University of Washington—and Jenna Hanchard—community storyteller, award-winning broadcast journalist, and a leader at The Riveter, a women-run co-working and community company poised to become a modern union of working women.
Conference attendees will also be able to consider ways to make publishing practices more inclusive with a session on “Equity, Retention, and Career Development” as well as one sharing perspectives from the fourth year of the Mellon University Press Diversity Fellowship Program.
Additional practical and timely sessions will include “Responding to the COVID-19 Crisis,” “What Booksellers Wish University Presses Knew,” “Tips and Tools for Workflow Efficiency,” and “Ethics and Transparency in Publishing.” Other sessions will encourage understanding of and collaboration with university relations departments and acquiring librarians.
During the conference, the AUPresses community also will celebrate this year’s Book, Jacket, and Journal Show, with a Q&A session featuring several of the 2020 judges. This annual juried competition honors the design and production teams whose work furthers a long tradition of excellence in university press publication design.
Organizers have planned opportunities for professional networking and collegial connection beyond the professional education program, as well. The speed-networking event that proved popular in 2019 is coming to the virtual meeting. A virtual happy hour will be hosted for BIPOC attendees. And attendees are encouraged to participate in a Virtual 5K on Saturday, June 20, and a Trivia Tournament on June 22.
A preliminary program is available online and registration is now open.
About the Association of University Presses
AUPresses is an organization of nearly 160 international nonprofit scholarly publishers. Since 1937, the Association of University Presses advances the essential role of a global community of publishers whose mission is to ensure academic excellence and cultivate knowledge. The Association holds intellectual freedom, integrity, stewardship, and equity and inclusion as core values. AUPresses members are active across many scholarly disciplines, including the humanities, arts, and sciences, publish significant regional and literary work, and are innovators in the world of digital publishing.