Have You Heard About…The Winner of the Butterfield Scholarship

Sarah SilvermanThe winner of the Carol C. Butterfield Scholarship was announced yesterday at the May lunch panel. Please join us in congratulating Sarah Silverman, Publicity and Marketing Associate for City Lights Publishers, for receiving the $3000 scholarship.

The scholarship grant will allow her to attend the Stanford Professional Publishing Course focused on publishing in the digital world.

“I am so thrilled to receive NCBPMA’s 2009 Butterfield Scholarship,” exclaims Sarah. “I had wanted to take the Stanford Publishing Course for a long time, but couldn’t do so without the help of a scholarship.”

“It was a very, very tough call,” explains Michael Crowley, head of the scholarship board. There were nine applicants in this years’ round. “One criteria was economic need, which, believe me, all nine applicants had no problem meeting. One woman told us her savings had dwindled down to almost nothing during her husband’s battle with cancer. Another applicant told us she was attending a private liberal arts college whose tuition was more than her parents’ combined annual income.

Beyond that it’s really a question of who we think would get the best use out of the scholarship, which is difficult to decide. Almost everyone wanted to take either the Stanford or Denver publishing courses. We did lean a little towards people who were just starting out in publishing, versus people who’d been in the business for a while, just because we thought newbies would get more out of the courses.”

What really impressed the board about Sarah was that she left a better-paying job at a law firm to take the position at City Lights, and had very definite ideas about what she hoped to learn at the Stanford program. “I can’t wait to go down to Stanford, be a student for a week, learn about publishing and digital media from some of the smartest people in the industry, and share that knowledge with all of my colleagues at City Lights,” she says.

This excerpt from her application may have been the clincher: “The Stanford course involves a week-long assignment to prepare a roadmap of strategic changes attendees can make when they get back to the office. A smart, innovative digital marketing plan developed with the help of Stanford professionals would surely be more valuable to City Lights than the myriad anecdotes, predictions and ominous trend pieces we are constantly bombarded with.”

“She sounded fired up,” explains Crowley. “We kind of felt like we’d be pumping some promising new blood into publishing.”

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