Deepening its commitment to library issues, Publishers Weekly is pleased to announce the addition of Brian Kenney, formerly editorial director of Library Journal, SLJ, and The Horn Book, as a contributing editor and blogger. In his new role, Kenney will write a monthly column dedicated to exploring the dynamic relationship between publishers and libraries, will contribute blog posts and commentary, and will report from library conferences.
“Adding Brian to our strong team of contributors will greatly enhance PW’s voice in the library world,” said PW publisher Cevin Bryerman. “We’re delighted to add another vibrant perspective to our library coverage, and dedicated to keeping a robust conversation going between libraries and publishers in the pages of PW, and online."
Kenney is the director of the White Plains Public Library. In his ten years working with LJ and SLJ, he greatly expanded their reach, launching an array of new publications, including Library by Design, SLJ Teen, Extra Helping and Patron Profiles, as well as initiating a host of in-person and online events. A longtime book reviewer, Kenney has chaired the ALA’s Notable Books Council and is joining the 2013 committee of ALA’s Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction. As editorial director of Reed Business Information's publishing group, Kenney also served as editorial director of Publishers Weekly from 2009-2010, before Reed Elsevier divested the division.
Before joining the publishing world, Kenney worked for several New York City libraries, with his longest stint with the Brooklyn Public Library, where he eventually managed the Central Library. “As much as my career has had a plan, I always intended to return to work in libraries,” said Kenney. At White Plains, Kenney is overseeing a multi-year renovation project “that is as much a chance to recreate library service as it is to update a great building."
“I’ve always had great respect for the PW team, and I’m really pleased to be joining them,” said Kenney. “Best of all, I’ll be writing about what interests me the most—the transformations at work in publishing and libraries, and how the changes in one industry can ricochet into the other. I’ve spent the last 10 years listening closely to publishers and librarians, so I’ll be bringing a healthy amount of context to the issues of the day."
Kenney joins a team of contributing editors working with PW senior writer Andrew Albanese, who leads the magazine's library coverage, including: Peter Brantley, director of the Internet Archive’s Bookserver Project; NPR contributor and former Seattle librarian Nancy Pearl, whose Check It Out! column runs monthly; New York Law School professor James Grimmelmann, who joined the PW team in October as a blogger and legal affairs contributor; and Boing Boing co-founder Cory Doctorow, who writes on copyright, technology and digital publishing issues.
"I've had the pleasure of working with Brian in the past, and I'm thrilled to have the chance to do so again," said Albanese. "He'll bring valuable and entertaining insight to our library coverage, both from his perspective as a hands-on, working librarian, and from his years in publishing."
Kenney’s first column will run in the December 3 issue, PW’s ALA Midwinter preview.