Simon & Schuster CEO Carolyn Reidy has just died of a heart attack today, she was 71. She was the sole woman who held the very top position at a major publisher.
Carolyn was both an exemplary leader and a supremely talented and visionary publishing executive,’ Eulau said in a statement about Reidy, who joined Simon & Schuster in 1992 and had served as CEO since 2008. ‘As a publisher and a leader, Carolyn pushed us to stretch to do just that little bit more; to do our best and then some for our authors, in whose service she came to work each day with an unbridled and infectious enthusiasm and great humor.’
“As a publisher and a leader, Carolyn pushed us to stretch to do just that little bit more; to do our best and then some for our authors, in whose service she came to work each day with an unbridled and infectious enthusiasm and great humor,” he added.
A native of Washington, D.C. who was raised in Silver Spring, Maryland, she was an undergraduate at Middlebury College, and received a master’s degree and a doctorate in English from Indiana University. Reidy had worked in publishing for much of her adult life, starting in 1974 in the subsidiary rights division of Random House. Before coming to Simon & Schuster, she was president and publisher of Avon Books.
Simon & Schuster is one of the so-called “Big Five” New York based publishers, with authors including Stephen King, Doris Kearns Goodwin and Bob Woodward, who in an email to The Associated Press called her “One of the great publishers and book people of all time” and praised her as “both tough and generous.” On Twitter, novelist Jennifer Weiner noted that she had worked with Reidy for her whole career.
“She was a trailblazer and a role model and a champion for me and so many other women,” Weiner wrote of Reidy, who at the time of her death was the only woman running one of the Big Five publishers. “Most of all, she was a smart and passionate reader.”
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times.