Like many of us, I’m not good with goodbyes. When I was 4, I cried for a week when my parents sent my bunny rabbit pajamas (handed down from two cousins and my sister) to a “special farm” because my precious pj’s were barely more than tatters. (Stupid farm.) But the top and bottom set, married by snaps around my waist, offered a sense of security that helped me fall asleep. To this day, it’s painful to bid farewell to things and people I love.
I remember my bunny rabbit pajamas because that was my first experience with saying goodbye. Over a handful of decades, it hasn’t become less painful as I announce that this is my last issue as editorial director for the International Sleep Products Association, which publishes BedTimes and its sister publication Sleep Savvy. The past 10 years have given me opportunity to grow professionally and personally, for which I am thankful.
Tendering my resignation has been difficult, leading to much soul searching about my place in the publishing world in the twilight of my career. To make a long story short — I have accepted a position as editor of a North Carolina-based lifestyle magazine in my hometown of Greensboro. Having led several similar magazines about the Southeast, I think this publication is a good fit for me.
I know I am leaving our magazines in extremely qualified hands. Beth English, who, until a couple weeks ago served as our managing editor, has been named editorial director for both publications. A seasoned communications professional and editor, Beth has worked for ISPA for seven years and has mastered the complex bedding industry. The magazines will flourish with her at the helm. I am proud of my colleague and friend, who has brilliant ideas on advancing BedTimes’ content.
Beth has a team working with her that makes the Bill Belichick/Tom Brady Patriots look like a Pop Warner gang. Leading advertising is Kerri Bellias, who is joined by sales representative Gary Socha and ad production/sales coordinator Julie Lewis Dossey. Stephanie Belcher designs attractive pages to complement our editorial, and Mary Rulli keeps our circulation growing. Editor at large Dave Perry provides his extensive industry knowledge (does anyone know more about the bedding industry?!), and former editor in chief Julie Palm provides myriad contributions, from writing to spearheading special projects.
From ISPA headquarters, I could not have asked for a more supportive, encouraging and thoughtful leadership. I know Catherine Lyons, Mary Helen Rogers and Ryan Trainer will extend the same to Beth.
Thank you. I wish you every success, and I will never forget you.