The following insight was shared from Kent Anderson. Anderson, CEO of RedLink, a startup devoted to helping librarians and publishers “see what they’re missing”.
Anderson is the former editor-in-chief of The Scholarly Kitchen (as well as its founder), a former SSP Board member, and a past President of SSP. In 2011, he received the SSP’s Distinguished Service Award, the organization’s highest honor. Anderson has a BA in English and an MBA. He is the founder of Caldera Publishing Solutions, and has been Publisher at AAAS/Science, CEO/Publisher for the Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery, Publishing Director for the New England Journal of Medicine, and Director of Medical Journals for the American Academy of Pediatrics.
I’ve been a member of SSP for more than half of the organization’s existence. The main things I associate with SSP are “support” and “ambition.” SSP is an ambitious organization that supports its member, especially if they are themselves ambitious. This is reflected in its multiple programs to help early career professionals, involve people from around the world, and cultivate volunteerism as a form of learning to mutual benefit. It also shows up more subtly in the everyday work people do together, and in the staff supporting the volunteers.
My favorite memories generally involve being pushed or pulled by SSP events — whether being asked to speak, run the Top Management Roundtable with a colleague, serve on the Board, run for President, or start the Scholarly Kitchen. I’ve always experienced the supportive nature of the organization as I stepped out onto each tightrope. It always seemed that people would drop everything if they could help.
I think this balance between ambition and support is what makes SSP great. The SSP Annual Meeting captures this perfectly, with ambitious topics, supportive teams executing interesting sessions, and so forth. The new regional events and webinars are other good examples.
In short, SSP holds a ton of great memories for me, and a ton of potential, all bolstered by this unique interplay of ambition and supportiveness.