Lynette Owen on winning the Kim Scott Walwyn Prize

Lynette Owen is a leading authority on Copyright.  She is Copyright Director at Pearson Education and has a particular interest in establishing licensing business in developing and transitional countries.  She’s taught and written widely on these topics.  Lynette was awarded an OBE for services to publishing and international trade in 2009.  She was also the inaugural recipient of the Kim Scott Walwyn Prize.  Here, she reflects on what it was like to receive the award.

The Kim Scott Walwyn Prize was launched in 2003 to recognise achievements by women in their publishing careers and I was delighted to be the first recipient of the award – not primarily for my “day job” as Copyright Director for Pearson Education, but for my external work running training courses in copyright and rights both in the UK and abroad, most particularly for publishers in transitional and developing countries; also for my Selling Rights book and for Clark’s Publishing Agreements: A Book of Precedents, a book to which I contribute and edit.  Rights has sometimes been regarded as something of a Cinderella in the publishing world, so this recognition was especially welcome.  My nomination was supported by two former colleagues, Tim Rix, the Chairman of Longman for much of my initial career there, and Sheila Lambie, now a tutor on the publishing degree course at Oxford Brookes University.

Since that first award, recipients have included a range of women with years of experience and established reputations in their publishing fields; they have come from both the trade and academic sectors of publishing.  I was keen to support the Prize for the future, and contributed a proportion of the award back to the Prize fund.  It has been a pleasure to attend the award ceremonies and to remain in touch with Kim’s family at those events.

In 2011 the focus of the Prize was revised to reflect Kim’s dedication to encouraging young publishers in their future careers, and the Prize Committee now partners with the Society of Young Publishers and the Publishing Training Centre.  This new focus has produced applicants with proven track records in their early careers and future potential; publishing is undergoing a period of great change and recent applicants have demonstrated their ability to embrace such change.  The Prize has undoubtedly had a major impact on the future prospects of the shortlisted candidates and the winners.  I am delighted that the initiative continues to thrive and support it unreservedly.

The 2013 Kim Scott Walwyn Prize is now accepting entries.  More information and full terms and conditions can be found here.

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