UC Press hires new director


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The University of California Press, which has had its greatest success ever with ‘The Autobiography of Mark Twain,’ announced Thursday that it is hiring a new director. Alison Mudditt will take over the reins next month from Lynne Withey, who will retire next month after eight years in the position.

Our sibling blog L.A. Now reports:


‘This is somebody who has a deep understanding of scholarly communication and what academic publishing is all about. But she also has this very strong appreciation of commercial publishing,’ Daniel Greenstein, the UC system’s vice provost for academic planning and programs, said of the British-born Mudditt. Greenstein, who oversees the UC Press, also noted Mudditt’s experience in launching several initiatives in digital publishing, an area that the press has pursued in recent years.

Mudditt has deep experience in scholarly publications, although she has not previously led a university press. She was executive vice president in charge of higher education programs at SAGE Publications, a Thousand Oaks-based press that has a large business in college textbooks, scholarly journals and electronic media, and has also worked at Taylor & Francis, a leading academic publisher.

While it might be a challenge for Mudditt to repeat Withey’s recent success, it may not be impossible. There are two more volumes of Mark Twain’s autobiography still to come.

-- Carolyn Kellogg