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University of Iowa News Release

July 13, 2004

UI Press Director Carver Named To National Academic Press Board

Holly Carver, director of the University of Iowa Press, has been elected to the board of directors of the American Association of University Presses, the leading national organization of non-profit scholarly publishing houses.

One of the AAUP's roles is to help academic presses survive in the face of dwindling public aid for higher education. Carver is familiar with that dilemma, since part of the UI Press' annual subsidy from the university's general education fund was recently targeted for elimination by a UI cost-cutting committee, a loss that would have made it difficult for the Press to continue as a going concern. UI President David Skorton declined the recommendation for now, but Carver said the issue will continue to concern academic presses.

Carver said one of her goals as board member is to educate people about the importance of academic presses and the unique niche they fill in the publishing industry. Most of the books published by academic presses in the United States are intended for specialized audiences, and therefore would not be published by larger, for-profit publishing houses that target general audiences. But she said the information contained in these books is so important that it needs to be published, regardless of the size of the market.

"These books provide very valuable scholarship that needs to be made available to scholars and researchers," she said. "Many of these books simply wouldn't be published outside of an academic press, but they are crucial to fulfilling the academic mission of any research university."

Carver came to UI Press in 1985 and has been director since 1999. She is one of 13 members of the AAUP's board of directors, and her three-year term expires in 2007.

The UI Press publishes 35-40 titles each year, including the annual winners of the prestigious Iowa Short Fiction Award, the Simmons Short Fiction Award and the Iowa Poetry Prize. The Press also publishes the Iowa Whitman Series, a collection of scholarly and creative works about American poet Walt Whitman, and a series of photography books chronicling Iowa's history in photos. In addition, the press publishes award-winning titles in theater history, archaeology and literary studies.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Service, 300 Plaza Centre One, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Tom Snee, 319-384-0010,