Jon Anderson, president and publisher of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, announced on Wednesday in a staff memo that the company’s children’s division will be reorganizing under two publishing entities: a trade publishing group focusing on picture books, middle grade, and YA; and a new branded publishing team to concentrate on the expansion of preschool titles, beginning readers, chapter books, graphic novels, licensing and middle-grade brands, and IP.
Valerie Garfield will steer the new group as v-p and publisher of licensed, novelty, and branded publishing. In addition to her current role overseeing the Little Simon and Simon Spotlight imprints, she will take the helm of the Aladdin Books imprint and its staff. To support the growth of series and licenses, Garfield will be hiring a manager of global brand strategy.
On the trade publishing side, senior v-p and publisher Justin Chanda will bring the editorial staff of the Simon Pulse teen imprint under his umbrella. He will continue to oversee the S&S Books for Young Readers, Atheneum Books for Young Readers, Margaret K. McElderry Books, Caitlyn Dlouhy Books, Salaam Reads and Denene Millner Books imprints.
Liesa Abrams, currently v-p and editorial director of Simon Pulse, will now be v-p, executive editor-at-large, reporting to Garfield. Abrams will continue to work with core authors including Shannon Messenger, Brandon Mull, Rachel Renée Russell, and James Riley, while finding new middle-grade writers.
Paula Wiseman, v-p and publisher of her eponymous imprint, and Allyn Johnston, v-p and publisher of Beach Lane Books, will continue their roles within the trade group, reporting to Anderson.
As a result of the reorg, Mara Anastas, v-p and publisher of Aladdin and Simon Pulse, is departing the company after more than 20 years—during which time she held positions in sales and subsidiary rights, and as deputy publisher and publisher.
Anderson said, “We’re all deeply grateful for the many ways Mara has contributed over the years and wish her the best in her next endeavor.” He added, “I am certain with this new structure in place, our Children’s Publishing Division will be even better positioned to serve our authors and brands, to publish with the creativity and skill for which we are known, and to compete and succeed in the constantly evolving marketplace.”