Marilyn Abel, longtime executive director of the Educational Book and Media Association, died on April 5 following a brief illness. She was 74 years old.
Abel launched her career in book marketing and management with the American Booksellers Association and later with Wayne State University Press, New American Library, Viking Penguin, the University of Chicago Press, and The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
In 1975, Abel co-founded the Educational Paperback Association (now known as the Educational Book and Media Association) and was appointed executive director, a position she held for 35 years. EBMA president Gene Bahlman, with Follett Library Resources, stated, “We have lost our visionary leader. Without Marilyn’s inspired direction, EBMA would not be the success it is today. She will be deeply missed.” Since Abel’s retirement, the organization has made an annual contribution in her honor to the National Coalition Against Censorship; it will continue to do so in her memory.
A funeral mass will be held at Most Holy Trinity Church in East Hampton, N.Y., on Saturday, April 13; burial will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations in Abel’s memory may be made to: the National Coalition Against Censorship, 19 Fulton Street, Suite 407, New York, N.Y., 10038.