The Association of Book Publishers of British Columbia (ABPBC) has announced Heidi Waechtler as the organization's incoming executive director, effective this September.
Waechtler replaces ABPBC's outgoing executive director Margaret Reynolds, the longest serving director of a book publishers’ association in Canada. Reynolds is retiring and will step down from the organization on October 7, 2016. She has worked tirelessly on behalf of BC’s book publishers, authors and readers for 28 years. Among her many achievements was the shepherding in of BC’s Book Publishing Tax Credit as well as the 1992 Environmentally Sound Paper Initiative, helping to establish and maintain the BC books section of the BC ferries, and initiating the Canadian publishers’ catalogues for teacher librarians, Canadian Aboriginal Books for Schools. Reynolds will continue to serve on the ABPBC’s Literary Arts Centre steering committee.
Speaking of her new position, Waechtler said, “I’m excited to return to the province where I started working in publishing, and for the opportunity to use my industry experience to help effect wider change for the BC-owned sector. Under the thoughtful and indefatigable leadership of Margaret Reynolds, the ABPBC has fostered a thriving book culture in the province through advocacy work and capacity-building initiatives. Margaret is a tough act to follow, but I look forward to working with the board and the membership to continue navigating the ever-changing publishing climate, and to exploring new opportunities for the association.”
Commenting on her departure Reynolds said, “I have been so blessed to have spent most of my career working with BC’s book publishers. They care deeply about their authors and Canadian culture, they work in a complex environment with small returns, they are hugely entrepreneurial, and they are great fun. I luckily found my tribe early and was happy to contribute along with them but it is now time to hand over the reins. I am completely confident that my successor will bring intelligence, knowledge of the industry, and a fresh approach to the job. The ABPBC remains in good hands.”
Waechtler’s tenure as new executive director begins on September 6, 2016. A party to celebrate Reynolds’ 28 years of service to BC publishers will be held on October 5 in Vancouver.