After more than eight years at the American Booksellers Association, Content Director Sydney Jarrard will be leaving her position at the end of August to focus on her own writing. She will also be launching an editorial service: Speakeasy Conscious Language Consulting.
“We are so grateful to Sydney for all that she's done for ABA and for booksellers during her tenure, especially this past year and a half,” said ABA CEO Allison Hill. “From her vision for member communication and the board nomination process, to her commitment to staff development and her extraordinary copyediting gift, her contributions have been many; she will be greatly missed. Although we are sad to see Sydney go, we are happy to know she'll be focused on her own writing and editing and we look forward to booking her at a future Winter Institute!”
Dan Cullen, ABA’s senior strategy officer and Jarrard’s supervisor, said, “From her first days at ABA, Sydney hit the ground running and has approached her work on behalf of member bookstores with focus, consummate skill, the highest of standards, and unflagging collegiality and good humor. Readers of BTW know what a great job she does, but many might not realize that so much of ABA’s content — from BookWeb.org to the Indie Next List — have greater clarity, accuracy, and focus because of Sydney’s hard work. Importantly, her belief in the power and the potential of language has helped ABA’s ongoing DEI efforts in her work with a number of colleagues. I’ve learned a lot working with Sydney and look forward to seeing what her next chapter will be.”
Jarrard joined ABA in 2013 as the content coordinator, later becoming the senior writer/researcher, then content director, overseeing ABA’s website content, newsletter, and social media, in addition to all association editing.
In her current role, Jarrard has focused on broadening ABA’s content and language to be more inclusive and welcoming of the entire spectrum of diversity. Her new editorial service, Speakeasy, aims to help businesses large and small eliminate oppressive language from print and online content.
Along with running Speakeasy, Jarrard will continue writing young adult fiction. “As my grandfather says, ‘You only go around once,’” said Jarrard. “After winning a writing fellowship in 2017 and now having a reading coming up in September, it’s time to go all in. I hope to be visiting indie bookstores across the country again in a few years, but this time as an author. I can’t wait to see all of my bookish friends again.”
Following Jarrard’s departure, please direct any questions or inquiries to the following email addresses:
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