PW Star Watch Names 50 Honorees for 2019, Its Fifth Year

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In the annual PW Star Watch program, emerging talents in the North American publishing markets are honored. A ‘Superstar’ goes to Frankfurter Buchmesse.

At the 2018 PW Star Watch party. Image: PW Star Watch

By Porter Anderson, Editor-in-Chief | @Porter_Anderson
‘Superstar’ To Be Named September 18
The annual PW Star Watch program’s list of 50 semifinalists for 2019 will give way to a Top Five grouping, as usual, and from that shortlist will be drawn the 2019 “Superstar.”

The winner is to be named on September 18 at a party at New York City’s Marquee nightclub, preceded by a VIP reception for the brace of 50.

The program is a collaboration between the Frankfurter Buchmesse and Publishers Weekly, and honors up-and-coming talent in the North American publishing industry. The competition originally was for US publishing figures and in 2018 was expanded to include Canadians.

The Superstar winner of this year’s competition will be flown to Germany for the book fair (October 16 to 20 this year). The trip covers an all-access Business Club Ticket, which includes access to the club at the fair and conferences and matchmaking events.

The 2018 Superstars were Francesca Cavallo and Elena Favilli, founders of Timbuktu Labs and creators of the Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls series.

Previous Superstars include:

In a prepared statement, Publishers Weekly editorial director Jim Milliot is quoted, saying, “For the fifth year in a row, PW Star Watch has identified a new swath of innovators and motivators within the publishing and bookselling communities.”

And speaking for Frankfurt, Thomas Minkus, who is vice-president for emerging media and English-language markets, is quoted, saying, “Frankfurter Buchmesse is dedicated to growing and celebrating talent around the world. We are proud to support all of the honorees over the last five years both in the United States and Canada, and on a global stage.”

Information on tickets for the September 18 event (6:30 to 8:30 p.m. ET) is here. The cost of a ticket runs US$59 to $99, the lower price representing an early bird rate, available through Tuesday (August 27).

2019 PW Star Watch Honorees
  • Margot Atwell, senior director of publishing, Kickstarter, PBC
  • Andrea Baird, marketing manager, Triumph Books
  • Jennifer N. Baker, creator and host, Minorities in Publishing Podcast
  • Nicole Brinkley, bookseller, Oblong Books and Music
  • Amanda and Rob Broder, co-founders, Ripple Grove Press
  • Maddie Caldwell, editor, Grand Central Publishing
  • Emily Day, Library marketing coordinator and YA specialist, Macmillan
  • Marissa DeCuir, president, partner, JKS Communications
  • Hannah Oliver Depp, bookseller, Loyalty Bookstore
  • Andrea DeWard, marketing director, Penguin Random House
  • Grace Doyle, editorial director, Thomas & Mercer, Amazon Publishing
  • Orlando Dos Reis, editor, Scholastic
  • Emily Folks, publishing sales director, Andrews McMeel Publishing
  • Lynn Ford, Internet marketing specialist, C&T Publishing
  • Gina Gagliano, publishing director, Random House Graphic
  • Naomi Gibbs, senior editor, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Adria Goetz, literary manager, Martin Literary & Media Management
  • Jennifer Griffiths, designer, Penguin Random House Canada
  • Greg Hunter, editorial director, Lerner Publishing Group
  • Lori Kilkelly, agent and owner, LK Literary Agency
  • Na Kim, art director, Farrar, Straus and Giroux
  • Kevin Kushman, director, Blue Manatee Literacy Project
  • Justin Paul Lawrence, sales director, InterVarsity Press
  • Heather Luciano, publisher, Elsevier
  • Bethany Marshall, publishing director, Morgan James Publishing
  • Lauren Maturo, senior publicist, Blackstone
  • Sara Megibow, senior agent, KT Literary, LLC
  • David Moench, director of publicity, Del Rey, Random House, Penguin Random House
  • Carrie Montoya, manager, revisions and author care, Cognella
  • Josh Mosey, children’s book buyer, Baker Book House
  • Amber Oliver, acquiring editor, Harper Collins and Harper Perennial
  • Kwanza Osajyefo, cofounder, Creator, Author, BLACK
  • Andy Perham, bookseller, Books Inc.
  • Beth Phalen, literary agent, Gallt & Zacker Literary Agency
  • Amelia Possanza, assistant director of publicity, Flatiron Books
  • Jennifer Powell, director of rights and co-editions, Scholastic
  • Joshua Redlich, senior publicist, Random House Children’s Books
  • Clare Reeth, director of literary affairs, 20th Century Fox/Disney
  • Benjamin Rosenthal, executive editor, HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen Books
  • Noëlle Santos, founder and bookseller, The Lit Bar
  • Brian Skulnik, managing editor, RosettaBooks
  • Clay Stafford, President, CEO, Founder, Killer Nashville
  • Taneka Stotts, co-founding editor, author, Beyond Press
  • Brent Taylor, literary agent, Triada US Literary Agency
  • Nick Thomas, senior editor, Levine Querido
  • Emily Tyler, digital product manager, Rowman & Littlefield
  • Danny Vasquez, acquiring editor, Farrar, Straus and Giroux
  • Ivy Noelle Weir, publicist and marketing manager, Quirk Books
  • Reid Welsh, senior analyst, sales business development, Penguin Random House
  • Denis Woychuk, founder, KGB Bar and Literary Series

At the 2018 PW Star Watch party. Image: PW Star Watch


More from Publishing Perspectives on PW Star Watch is here, and on Frankfurter Buchmesse is here.

About the Author

Porter Anderson

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Porter Anderson has been named International Trade Press Journalist of the Year in London Book Fair's 2019 International Excellence Awards. He is Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. He co-founded The Hot Sheet, a newsletter for trade and indie authors, which now is owned and operated by Jane Friedman. He formerly was Associate Editor for The FutureBook at London's The Bookseller. Anderson also has worked as a senior producer, editor, and anchor with CNN.com, CNN International, and CNN USA, and as an arts critic (National Critics Institute) with The Village Voice and Dallas Times Herald.

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