Stephanie Williams. Courtesy of Wayne State University Press.

After months of turmoil, the hiring of Stephanie Williams hopes to bring stability to the Press. 

Following a tumultuous start to the year, Wayne State University Press has hired former Ohio University Press director, Stephanie Williams, as their new director. Williams will begin her role in early August. 

Williams will replace interim director of the Press, Kathy Wildfong, who came out of retirement after Wayne State fired three managers back in February. The firings sparked intense opposition and backlash from its Editorial board, authors and scholars. Wildfong rehired all three managers just days after she became the interim director. 

Wayne State University (WSU) Leonard Simons building
Wayne State University

According to the news release, Williams began her “publishing career as a promotions assistant at Pelican Publishing Company, followed by marketing management roles at the University Press of Florida, the University of Missouri Press, and the University Press of Kentucky.” 

Williams serves as a board member for the Association of University Presses and works for many of the organization’s committees, including the Equity, Justice, and Inclusion Committee and the Intellectual Property and Copyright Committee.

“I am delighted that Stephanie will be joining the University Press as our new director. Her talent and credentials are exceptional, and I feel she is an excellent fit with the team and the university,” Michael Wright, WSU Vice President of Marketing and Communications, and Chief of Staff, said in the news release. “Her leadership will make a difference for the Press, the university, and the community. The addition of Stephanie is yet another big step forward.

“I also wish to thank Kathryn Wildfong for stepping in as interim director while we conducted a new search. She did a great job getting the team refocused and re-energized, and we all wish her well on her second try at retirement.”  

WSU Press has a robust Jewish Studies publishing arm and longstanding ties to the Detroit Jewish community. 

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