Publishers Weekly announced today that American Booksellers Association CEO Oren Teicher and the ABA Board have been chosen as PW’s Person of the Year for 2013.
In writing about the award, the magazine noted that while “the independent bookselling community has been counted out more than once over the last three decades” in the face of superstores, online retailing, and e-books, by 2013 the indie channel had recovered and “independent bookstores are once again seen as critical to the success of the book industry.”
Regarding the selection of Teicher and the ABA Board, PW Co-editorial Director Jim Milliot said, “It was clear from discussions with the editorial team that the role independent booksellers are playing in keeping print books a viable business needed to be recognized in 2013, and with the leadership Oren and the ABA Board has provided it became an easy choice.”
Past winners of the award include E.L. James, David Shanks, Len Riggio, Larry Kirshbaum (at the time with Time Warner Books), Jane Friedman, and Jeff Bezos. The award is determined by the PW editors based on who has made the most important contribution to the book publishing and bookselling industry in the past year.
“This is an extraordinary honor,” said ABA’s Teicher, speaking on behalf of the ABA Board and himself. “But the real winners of this award are independent booksellers nationwide. Their hard work, continuous innovation, and passionate commitment to serving their customers and their communities, while connecting writers and readers, are responsible for this resurgence in indie bookselling. I am particularly gratified to share this recognition with the members of the ABA Board of Directors. The current Board members under Steve Bercu’s effective leadership — along with their predecessors — have devoted thousands of hours to shaping the programs and policies of this association, and they have done so with skill, intelligence, and effectiveness. And, while I am very humbled in being singled out, no one knows more than I that whatever recognition ABA receives also belongs in large part to my remarkable colleagues on the ABA staff.”