Keith J. Kelly
The Mpa, now known as the Association of Magazine Media, is looking for a new president and CEO now that Nina Link said she is stepping down after a 13-year run.
During Link’s tenure, the once-clubby consumer publishing world has gone through convulsions as it grappled with the recession and the rise of digital media.
Link had to downsize the organization by about 10 percent and saw her annual compensation, about $740,000 in 2006, chopped to $603,000 by 2010.
She also pushed the association’s digital expansion through conferences and pushed industrywide ad campaigns as magazines tried to hang on to their share of media marketing dollars.
Link also nipped and tucked the once leisurely three- or four-day annual conference — where the golf and tennis matches were seemingly the biggest items on the agenda — to more compact two-day sessions packed with all-day conferences.
She joined the former MPA from Children’s Television Workshop, where she became president after being the surprise choice in 1999 to lead the organization. Link was tapped by the then-Hearst President Cathleen Black, who was then serving as the MPA chairman.
Hearst executive Michael Clinton, the current chairman of MPA, said that Link approached him about two months ago with her intention to step down.
Link is staying through Dec. 31 to help with the transition.
With her run atop MPA, Link, 69, narrowly eclipsed the previous longevity record of ex-News Corp. executive, and one-time deputy mayor of New York City, Donald Kummerfeld, to become the longest-serving president in the association’s 90-plus-year history.
The MPA has retained Ann Blinkhorn, a former Spencer Stuart headhunter to run the search through Blinkhorn LLC.
The search committee includes Condé Nast President Bob Sauerberg, Hearst Magazines President David Carey and National Geographic Publishing President Declan Moore.
Book Expo America figured out a way to keep the crowds coming back right to the end at the Javits Convention Center.
Long lines began forming Wednesday afternoon for the book signing by author Elin Hilderbrand. But it was hard to tell if the crowds were drawn to her book “Summerland,” a novel set on the beaches of Nantucket — or the bottles of Corona beer that were being handed out.
Even William Schwalbe, who has a rather somber title with “The End of Your Life Book Club,” a memoir of how he had bonded with his literary mother as she underwent long treatments for a cancer that eventually took her life, had a few merry tipplers in his line.
Oxmoor House, a Time Warner imprint that publishes big coffee table books for the sports world, was also handing out imported beers and fine wines — as was a group of independent publishers, The Consortium.
“It’s all one big party now,” one ad sales executive was overheard exclaiming. The Book Expo admitted a limited number of public ticket holders — about 1,000 — for the first time. In the past, the show had been limited to publishers, booksellers and others directly tied to the event.
Room at the top
There’s more turmoil at Manhattan magazine, the local entry from Modern Luxury Media, which has been without an editor-in-chief for a month.
Following a shake-up earlier this week, it is now without its publisher and associate publisher, too.
In a revamp earlier this week, a half-dozen people were pink-slipped, including Publisher Leslie Wolfson and Associate Publisher David Baer.
The editor-in-chief job has been vacant since James Heidenry jumped ship a month ago to become editor of Star, replacing David Perel, who had been doing Star and RadarOnline.com. Sources say the company may be only days away from naming a replacement.
At the time of the original takeover, the Dickeys were pushing the idea that there could be synergy between their radio stations and Modern Luxury’s 26 publications in cities including New York, Chicago and Miami.
But there was virtually no crossover advertising in Manhattan and, sources say, there was tension between the national ad sales reps and the staff on the New York mag, both of whom worked here.
Matthew Carroll, head of national ad sales, is taking over publisher duties.
Modern Luxury is not part of the publicly traded Cumulus, but instead is a separately held private company controlled by Lewis and Michael Dickey and Macquarie Capital.
A company spokesman said that the restructuring last week actually returns the magazine to a set-up similar to one that it had before it took over the company from investors in a fire sale.
Keith J. KellyMEDIA, the Association of Magazine Media, Hearst Magazines, Nina Link, Cumulus Media, New York, National Geographic Publishing, William Schwalbe