ACU Press is in the process of a transition in leadership after director Leonard Allen moved to Lipscomb University.
Since Allen left for Lipscomb, ACU Press’s operations have been overseen by Duane Anderson, director of sales and operations. Anderson currently serves as an interim director until a new director is found.
ACU Press is an academic publishing house that specializes in texts for Christian higher education. The company is one of only seven faith-based universities to posses an affiliated press and the only faith-based university that’s a full member of the Association of American University Presses.
Since the formation of ACU Press more than three decades ago, it has released more than 422 titles and 204 eBooks, 32 of which were published in the 2014 fiscal year alone Anderson said.
ACU Press currently boasts published authors from more than 50 universities and sells books in more than 6,000 bookstores worldwide, the biggest of which include Walmart, Books-a-Million, Barnes & Noble and Sam’s Club.
The funds for operating the Press come from four sources. These sources include book sales, university support, gifts and grants and endowments. Book sales have steadily increased since 2005 requiring less support from ACU and other sources, Anderson said. Though many titles are carried nation-wide, multiple published works are purely academic and do not generate profit and need a subsidy.
Former director Allen took over ACU Press in 2005. At this time, Leafwood Publishers was acquired by ACU. Before Allan’s directorship, ACU Press published 76 titles over a 21-year period – an average of about four books per year. During Allan’s nine years as director, ACU Press saw expansive growth.
The search for a new director has not yet begun, said Provost Robert Rhodes. At the time, there are no candidates in mind, but future directors will be expected to oversee daily operations, acquire new authors, establish a vision for the future and provide themes and topical ideas of interest.
“Most of the authors published by ACU Press are from outside the ACU community,” Rhodes said. “So, we expect the new director to keep up with the challenges of higher education and attract high quality authors with a wide appeal.”