Cover Story : Top Women in Magazine Publishing
Publishing Executive honors leading female executives who are helping to shape the industry.May 2009
The women who were selected this year represent various segments of the industry, including business-to-business, consumer, association and custom publishing, and are at the top of their fields in business management, editorial, digital, manufacturing, production and audience development, among others. They were chosen by Publishing Executive with input from its advisory board and other industry constituents, including Women in Periodical Publishing (WIPP.net), a nonprofit organization that aims to educate, empower and support women in print and online publishing.
The power and influence these women have are undeniable. They head Fortune 500 companies, create brands that become household names and spearhead multimillion-dollar launches. They publish articles that set trends and transform readers’ thinking, make decisions that ensure millions of magazines arrive in subscribers’ mailboxes, and contribute to the advancement of the magazine publishing industry as a whole. Above all, they are leaders, mentors, inspirations.
In the pages that follow, you will meet these top women in magazine publishing and learn a little about their career paths and achievements. Each woman also has shared with Publishing Executive readers her best tip for succeeding in magazine publishing.
Michela O’Connor Abrams, President and Publisher, Dwell Media
Under O’Connor Abrams’ leadership, Dwell Media has initiated several successful brand-extension platforms including Dwell magazine, Dwell.com, the Dwell Homes Collection and Dwell on Design. Dwell has been named in Adweek’s “Hot List,” Advertising Age’s “A-List,” and in Capell’s Circulation Report as a “Top Ten Performer.” In 2005, Dwell won a National Magazine Award for General Excellence, and O’Connor Abrams was named by Media Industry News as Sales Leader of the Year. Prior to Dwell, she was president of Imagine Media’s Business Division. She has held executive positions at IDG, Ziff-Davis and McGraw-Hill. She serves on the board of Magazine Publishers of America’s Independent Magazine Advisory Group (MPA-IMAG) and is the chair of the board of advisers to Afar Media.
- Tip: “Publishing is platform agnostic. The sooner any publisher recognizes that they represent a content brand that serves a community, the better off they will be. No publisher should be without a cohesive online, mobile, event and print content strategy. … Put your community at the center of your brand by tailoring and expressing your content on every possible platform.”
Gloria Adams, Senior Vice President of Audience Development and Book Publishing, PennWell Publishing
Adams is responsible for the circulation, list rental and book publishing operations for PennWell. She has been an active member of the circulation, distribution and business-to-business publishing community for more than 25 years. She is a current member of the American Business Media (ABM) Audience Development Committee and the BPA Audience Development Advisory Committee, has served on the ABC Circulation Managers Advisory Committee, the Mailers Technical Advisory Committee, and various other postal, distribution and circulation committees. She is a recipient of the Angelo R. Venezian Award and was the inaugural recipient of the ABM Circulation Career Award, among others.
- Tip: “You absolutely must remain flexible. Be willing to learn as much as you can, don’t be afraid of change and always try to have fun at what you do.”