Brian Napack, president and CEO of John Wiley & Sons, has been elected the new chairman of the Association of American Publishers. Napack, who had been vice-chairman since the beginning of 2020, succeeds John Sargent, who resigned from the position on September 17 following the announcement that he is leaving Macmillan Publishers.
Napack’s election was one of several board changes announced by the AAP. Don Weisberg, who is taking over the leadership of Macmillan’s trade group from Sargent, is also now representing Macmillan on the AAP board. Jonathan Karp, president and CEO of Simon & Schuster, has replaced Carolyn Reidy following her death earlier this year. And Julia Reidhead, chairman and president of W.W. Norton, has joined the board after being voted into an at-large seat by AAP’s membership in June.
Napack is taking over as AAP chairman 50 years after W. Bradford Wiley, then president of John Wiley, served as the organization’s first chairman. “A vibrant, independent publishing industry is simply essential to the health of our nation, and to the advancement of society worldwide,” Napack said in a statement. “This is as true today as it was when Wiley was founded in 1807.”
Commenting on Napack’s election, AAP president and CEO Maria A. Pallante said Napack’s “vision, experience, and skill will be invaluable to AAP as we carry on the important work of advancing authorship, science, and education, and as we advocate for the copyright and free expression protections that are essential to the global publishing industry.”
Sargent had been part of AAP for more than 20 years, nearly 13 of them as an officer. Observing that Sargent was AAP’s longest-serving officer, Pallante thanked him for his dedication: “We extend our profound gratitude to John for his warm and collegial leadership of our community and for his indelible contributions to the global publishing industry.”