Northwestern's Shear selected to head University of Nebraska Press

Released on 01/16/2009, at 2:00 AM
Office of University Communications
University of Nebraska–Lincoln
Lincoln, Neb., January 16th, 2009 —
Donna Shear (color JPEG)
Donna Shear (color JPEG)

Donna A. Shear has been named director of the University of Nebraska Press effective March 1.

Shear has been involved with scholarly publishing for many years. She comes to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln from the Northwestern University Press in Evanston, Ill., where she has been director since 2003. She became interim director in 2002 after joining Northwestern's Press in 2000 as associate director and chief financial officer.

During her tenure at Northwestern, the press forged alliances with other divisions of the university. Collaborations with the Block Museum, Medill School of Journalism, Kellogg School of Management and the library led to joint publishing ventures. She also led successful fundraising efforts and worked with the library to develop a scholarly communications digital repository policy.

"Donna is an experienced publishing executive with a strong background in scholarly publishing," said Prem Paul, UNL vice chancellor for research and economic development. "She brings strong business skills, which are critical in today's environment, and successful experience in working with authors. These skills will be valuable in positioning our press well into the future. Our press is a real gem, and I know Donna will continue and build upon its fine reputation."

Shear also has been a management consultant for university and independent publishers for many years. Earlier, she was director of sales and marketing for the Jewish Publication Society. She began her career in newspapers.

Shear holds an MBA from the University of Toronto and a bachelor's degree in political science from Rutgers University. She is active in the Association of American University Presses.

"The University of Nebraska Press has always had a stellar reputation in university press publishing, and that was what first attracted me to the position," Shear said. "I'm excited about working with the staff, the advisory board and the administration to fashion a long-term strategy for the press during these challenging times in book publishing."

The University of Nebraska Press ( a nonprofit scholarly and general interest press that publishes 160 new and reprint titles annually under the Nebraska and Bison Books imprints along with 25 journals. As the largest and most diversified university press between Chicago and California, with nearly 3,000 books in print, the press is best known for publishing works in indigenous studies, western American history, literary translation and sports history.

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