Interactive content developer Callaway Digital Arts announced that Lisa Holton, CEO and founder of kids’ digital media producer Fourth Story Media and former president of Scholastic trade publishing, has been named v-p of content development. CDA has also acquired selected properties from Fourth Story Media and announced two other executive appointments.
In a phone interview, Holton told PW that she is joining Callaway Digital Arts specifically to work as executive producer for the Learning Applications Media Partnership Project, an interactive educational program funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Education. However, Holton said that Callaway has also acquired “some” Fourth Story Media properties “that will come over with me,” although she declined to name or describe the properties at this time. Holton will also continue to work on The Amanda Project for Fourth Story Media/HarperCollins in addition to her new role at Callaway Digital Arts. Over the last 10 years, Callaway has worked to transform itself from a traditional publisher of lavishly illustrated printed books into a digital content producer specializing in interactive multimedia properties for the iPad and other mobile devices.
Holton, a veteran children' s publishing executive, has been instrumental in a variety of innovative digital children’s publishing projects including The 39 Clues, a Scholastic book and web-based storytelling venture, as well as working on the publication of J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Holton has also worked as a senior executive for HarperCollins and at Disney Global Children’s Books.
After leaving Scholastic in 2008, Holton founded Fourth Story Media, a digital development studio specializing in creating content that can be accessed across multiple formats from Web sites and online games to digital downloads and social networking. Fourth Story Media partnered with HarperCollins to launch The Amanda Project, a collaborative mystery series aimed at girls that spanned online games, blogs, music and merchandise, in addition to print works.
CDA also announced that Caryl Shaw, former executive producer at mobile game developer ngmoco:) (sic) and Electronic Arts/Maxis Studio, has been named executive producer. And Joe Ghazal, former COO and v-p of engineering at Kontiki, a video communication firm, has been named v-p of engineering.
Rex Ishibashi, CEO, Callaway Digital Arts, said, “Callaway is a new kind of company that requires a new kind of management team. Lisa, Joe and Caryl round out our team of distinguished interactive entertainment, publishing and educational leaders and are instrumental in helping us write a new future for interactive children’s media.”