Lerner Publishing Group has named Fran Greenman-Schmitz the new publisher of Kar-Ben Publishing, an imprint that publishes fiction and nonfiction books, from board books to middle grade reads, that feature Jewish characters and themes. Greenman-Schmitz will take on her new responsibilities on July 1, replacing Joni Sussman, who announced several months ago her retirement on June 28 after 20 years as publisher. Kar-Ben, which was founded in 1974, is marking its 50th anniversary this year; it was acquired by LPG in 2001 and publishes 20-24 titles each year.

Greenman-Schmitz, who is based in Madison, Wis. and will work remotely, has extensive marketing and branding experience, most recently serving as lead marketing executive for nine years at Strategy Solutions, a business consultancy company. There, clients included Rebel Girls, where she served as strategic advisor for content and partnerships for the children’s book publishing and digital media company; and Frog Street, where she served as chief marketing officer for the early childhood education company. Previously, she worked for six years for Highlights for Children, serving as consulting senior v-p, brand, entertainment, and strategic initiatives as the print magazine expanded into digital media. She also worked for 12 years at American Girl as the company’s director of brand marketing and content.

In a release, LPG president and CEO Adam Lerner stated, “With her extensive brand management and content development expertise, Fran brings to us a proven track record and will continue to build Kar-Ben’s strong publishing program. Fran is dedicated to Kar-Ben’s mission of providing a platform for diverse voices and perspectives that celebrate Jewish heritage and culture, and we are excited for her to continue grow Kar-Ben’s 50-year legacy of award-winning books.”

This story has been updated.