Judy Corman, 65; Head Publicist for Publisher of Harry Potter Books

From Times Wire Reports

Judy Corman, 65, the wife of author Avery Corman and head publicist for Scholastic Inc., which releases the Harry Potter novels in the United States, has died of cancer.

Corman died Monday at her home in Manhattan after a brief illness, Scholastic said.

Corman was the main contact for reporters eager for news about the Potter phenomenon, a task she handled with sympathy, occasional bewilderment and a reluctance to craft sound bites.

“She was very straight and very real, and very, very smart,” Dick Robinson, chairman, president and chief executive of Scholastic, told Associated Press on Monday. “If she didn’t know something, she told you. She didn’t throw words around.”


A native of Brooklyn, Corman began her career in the entertainment industry in the 1960s, when she worked as a publicist with Epic Records. Her clients included Miles Davis, John Denver and Willie Nelson. She also served as public relations director for Phoenix House, a drug-abuse treatment agency, and worked on several accounts for the communications firm Robinson, Lerer & Montgomery. She joined Scholastic in 1999 as senior vice president of corporate communications.