Patrick Alexander appointed as director of the University Press

May 05, 2009

University Park, Pa. -- Patrick Alexander has been appointed to the position of director of the Penn State University Press, effective July 2009. Sanford Thatcher, who has served as director for 20 years, will be moving to Texas, where he will continue to serve the Press as an acquiring editor.

In March 2007, Alexander joined the Press as associate director and editor-in-chief and as the co-director of Penn State University Libraries’ Office of Digital Scholarly Publishing. He has been involved in academic publishing for more than 25 years, having worked for Walter de Grutyer (Berlin/New York), Brill Academic Publishers (Leiden/Boston), and Hendrickson Publishers (Peabody, Massachusetts). Alexander has been active in industry-related events, such as the Charleston Library Conference and the Association of American University Presses, and he serves on the editorial board for SPARC’s (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition) campus-based publishing initiative. He is the author of several articles concerning issues of scholarly publishing, including essays on peer-review and marketing of scholarly works. He has conducted workshops on scholarly communication, writing, and academic publishing for more than 20 years.

Commenting on his appointment, Alexander said, “Penn State University Press possesses a remarkable history and solid foundation upon which to build, and I welcome the opportunity to work with such talented and dedicated colleagues. In this exciting time in scholarly communication, striving for excellence will require diligence and determination, but the stakes are high. The Press’s role in creating and disseminating knowledge and thereby educating the leaders of tomorrow affords a great privilege and a tremendous opportunity.”

As the publishing arm of Penn State, the Press is dedicated to serving the University community, members of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and scholars worldwide by publishing books and journals of the highest quality. It promotes the advancement of scholarship by disseminating knowledge—new information, interpretations, and methods of analysis — with an emphasis on core fields of the humanities and social sciences. The Press currently publishes about 55 new books each year plus 10 journals in the humanities and social sciences and has won over 100 book prizes since the early 1990s. In 2005 reorganization aligned the Press with the University Libraries, reporting to Nancy Eaton, dean of University Libraries, and in 2006 the Press celebrated its 50th anniversary.

For additional information, please call (814) 863-4240. To learn more about Penn State's Press, visit

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Last Updated January 09, 2015