Linda Exman, founder and president of New York Is Book Country, has decided to step down after 24 years directing the New York City book fair. She will be succeeded by Courtney Muller, former manager of BookExpo America, who will become executive director of NYIBC. Alyse Myers, NYIBC chair, praised Exman's "vision and dedication.... Linda has created a wonderful legacy for New York's readers." She will continue to serve as a consultant to the fair.
Muller worked for nine years at Reed Exhibition Companies, managing trade shows and events. She is credited with reorganizing and revitalizing the BookExpo show during her tenure managing the convention. For the past two years she has been v-p, Internet world events, at Penton Media.
Exman created NYIBC in 1979, organizing a group of book industry leaders to work on starting a city book festival. The founding of NYIBC is credited with launching the proliferation of book festivals around the country. Under Exman, the festival has grown from a one-day event to a five-day literary festival. Exman also developed the Reading Bee, a citywide competition in which students read aloud.