A Fiscal Vigilante
Twenty-eight years ago, Marie Myers settled in at her desk as the new temporary receptionist at Stevens Publishing in Waco, Texas. She was 30 years old and thought she’d give publishing a try. “My sister was in publishing, and I found it interesting,” recalls Myers.
Little did she know on that first day of her publishing career that she would work her way up to a top position with a global media company and be inducted into the Publishing Executive Hall of Fame.
FROM TEXAS TO TECHNOLOGY
When Myers moved on to a position at Texas Gardener magazine, also in Waco, she began trying her hand at various positions. “I started as a paste-up artist …,” she says. Eventually, Myers landed at Manhasset, N.Y.-based CMP Technology—a global provider of news distribution and specialist information services for the professional and enthusiast markets—where she has stayed for 25 years.
“After I stopped paste-up, I went into quality control and worked out of the printing plants for several years,” she says. Next, Myers moved into production––and just kept going.
Today, as senior vice president of manufacturing, she says, “I am responsible for our in-house premedia department, paper purchasing, all print contracts and print-related decisions, and distribution. Distribution includes delivery of our weeklies and their dispatches, movement of all inserts, and postal regulations and costs.”
'FINDING SAVINGS ANYWHERE I CAN'
Myers’ favorite aspect of her position is saving the company money. “I enjoy finding savings anywhere I can,” she says. “It is probably a big part of my personality.”
Steve Weitzner, CMP Technology’s president and CEO, has worked with Myers for more than 20 years, beginning when she was a production manager and he was an editor, and attests to Myers’ passion for cutting costs. “Marie was always very vigilant about cost savings for CMP’s production process, and I was the one who had to ask her on Friday afternoons to hold the presses because we wanted to rip up the front page to get in that last hot story,” Weitzner says.
Myers’ cost-saving efforts also involved implementing emerging technologies and new workflow processes.
“Some of my accomplishments are moving to CTP, putting in a Rampage system [which creates DCS2 locked-down files for the plant] to rip pages prior to going to the plant, our digital asset management system and, currently, an ad portal,” she says. “I have also created budget models for the company to not only budget by, but they will show full-years’ savings on the slightest change in paper or trim size. These models are used daily for several different objectives; they are one of the biggest ways for determining cost savings,” says Myers.
According to James Pizzo, CMP’s senior director of distribution and events billing, Myers also utilized her “expert vendor contract negotiation skills” to bring CMP into co-mailing, co-palletization and other distribution methods to offset increasing postage costs. Myers was behind the move to co-bind CMP’s flagship publication, InformationWeek, with U.S. News & World Report, generating annual savings of about a half-million dollars. This effort also marked the first time weekly publications from two different publishing companies were effectively co-bound.
“As CMP has evolved from a small magazine publisher into a multimedia technology company, Marie has consistently redesigned and rebuilt our production processes to maximize our capabilities while minimizing our costs. Marie’s initiatives have helped our customers work more effectively with us and saved CMP millions of dollars,” says Weitzner.