Attendees at the 2020 Accessible Publishing Summit
Jessica is the Digital and Art Director at ECW Press where she works on ebooks, accessibility, audiobooks, book covers, and metadata. Since 2018, Jessica has been working to overhaul the digital production and metadata systems at ECW to apply accessibility standards to their ebooks and hands-on, flexible control to their communication through metadata.
Nicolas is a Higher Education Officer at Copibec
Karoline believes that everything should be accessible. This belief has brought her to the National Network for Equitable Library Service (NNELS). Since starting as a Production Assistant and into her work as an Accessibility Tester she has been researching human rights concerns related to publishing and legal frameworks in which they work. In her role as an Accessibility Tester she has presented at The Accessibility Summit and at Ebookcraft. Before coming to NNELS she has worked as a Mediator, an Office Manager, and Articling Student. Karoline has 3 degrees from Queen’s University including a J.D. She is very involved in her community having been a member of Lions International since 2007, and more recently joined the Board of Directors of Blind Sailing Association of Canada. Karoline also serves as a Public Member at the College of Chiropractors. In her time off, she could be found on a sailboat and recently obtained her Small Craft Operators Licence. She enjoys spending time cooking, tasting wine, and talking to friends. Of course, one of her most cherished pastimes is reading.
David is the co-publisher and president of ECW Press, a Toronto-based book, ebook, and audiobook publisher with a mix of award-winning literary works and niche non-fiction, marketed around the world. He has a zeal for community building, both in books and beyond, and is presently the president of the Ontario Book Publishers Organization. Before books, he worked in the worlds of theatre and photography.
Mélissa is a master’s candidate in political science with the specialization in gender studies at l’Université du Québec à Montréal (UQÀM). She is a member of the Regroupement Stratégique des Chercheur-es en Études Féministes (RéQEF), the Collectif de Recherche Action Politique et Démocratie (CAPED) and the Groupe de recherche en études féministes en science politique (GREF). She is currently working with NNELS as an accessibility tester for electronic publications (EPUB) and electronic readers.
As an academic with dyslexia and dysorthographia, she is well aware of the importance of accessible publications and e-reader technologies towards a more inclusive way to share stories and knowledge.
Mélanie is Directrice de la référence et du prêt at the Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec
Kate is Executive Director at the Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP), the national voice of Canada’s independent English-language book publishers. Kate leads ACP’s government relations and advocacy program, and oversees the association’s communications, professional development, and marketing initiatives. An active participant in industry initiatives, Kate sits on the boards of eBOUND Canada, Work In Culture, and Canada FBM2020, the organization that will present Canada as Guest of Honour at the 2020 Frankfurt Book Fair.
Danny is a blind software engineer from British Columbia. An avid and curious reader, he enjoys cracking open EPUBs to explore their coding and assess their accessibility. Born accessible publishing is the future of Ebooks, and it is exciting to join you on this journey.
Kaden has been an accessibility tester with the National Network for Equitable Library Service (NNELS) for a little over a year, and was at the 2018 accessible publishing summit. Kaden lives in Nanaimo, B.C.
Éveline works for the Association nationale des éditeurs de livres for years as project manager for the Copyright Committee, the Digital, Innovation and Technology Committee, and the School Publishing Committee. She also represents ANEL on the board of the Coalition for the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, and on the Copyright Committee of the International Publishers Association.
Jennifer is the Director of Policy in the Office for Disability Issues at Employment and Social Development Canada, where she is responsible the development of policy options to further economic and social inclusion of persons with disabilities. One of her current priority areas is production and distribution of alternate format materials for people with print disabilities.
Anne joined Blackstone Audio in 2001 where she was quickly promoted to Head of Retail Sales, successfully developing new selling avenues, which quadrupled within 5 years. She has continued to manage Digital Sales for Blackstone Audio – the fastest growing portion of the company – since 2008, before becoming the VP of Sales. Leading her team in adapting to an ever-changing marketplace, she enjoys finding new ways to connect customers and partners with the enriching world of audiobooks. Born in France, Anne embraces her heritage by cooking French cuisine for friends and never refusing a glass of the good wine around her Southern Oregon area home.
Robert is the Manager of Audio Publishing and Distribution for the Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB)
Rina has over 15 years of experience in public library leadership, most recently as Collections & Technical Services Coordinator at Greater Victoria Public Library in British Columbia to her new role as the Executive Director for the Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA). Rina was a member of the CELA board from 2016-2019, and played a key role advocating for improved access to ebooks and digital audiobooks for libraries and their patrons through her participation with the Canadian Urban Libraries Council Digital Content Working Group. Rina is passionate about accessibility and excited about the possibilities for advancing equitable access through partnerships, advocacy, and technology.
Astrid has worke for the Association nationale des éditeurs de livres since last year as the Digital Cultural Project Agent, as part of the Measure 120 of the Government of Quebec’s Digital Cultural Plan. She represents the industry of book publishing and creation alongside the ADN network of the Measure 120.
Nick has spent the last 7 years working in higher education digital publishing and has just recently moved to trade publishing (with a specific focus on digital production, accessible EPUB production, and digital and print distribution/metadata management).
He was the XML workflow manager for the University of Toronto Press and responsible for producing accessible EPUBs in-house and running an XML workflow.
Nick served as a member for two years and the chair for one year on the Design & Production committee for the Association of University Presses, with a focus on digital publishing and XML/HTML workflow best practices.
He was the Organizer and Session Chair of the 2016 Association of University Presses Annual Meeting’s Workshop: “Accessibility is Accessible”
Nick spent the last 5 months of his previous job as a Production Manager for Canadian Scholars’ Press, assisting the publisher with grant applications for funding to implement an XML workflow and create accessible EPUBs. I was tasked with assessing XML workflow/digital conversion service providers and contacting accessibility experts to explore best practices and auditing/consulting.
He is now the Digital and Distribution Coordinator for Coach House Books (just started).
He teaches the course “Content Management” for the Publishing Program at Centennial College.
He is currently a member of the ACP-eBOUND Accessible Publishing Advisory Panel – Technical Specifications Group
Lindsey has been obsessed with books since she was a young girl growing up in New Brunswick. She holds a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of King’s College and has worked as a writer, editor, and production assistant for television news and magazines. For four years, she oversaw production and creation of Nimbus Publishing’s ebook and audiobook programs as their Digital Assets Manager. Currently, she is the Wilfrid Laurier University Press Production Coordinator and working towards implementing in-house ebook and audiobook strategies at the Press. In her spare time, you can usually find her at the curling rink or on the dance floor at a swing dance event.
JoAnna is an advocate for people who benefit from inclusive experiences. She loves helping others understand the needs of people with diverse abilities, and inventing ways to improve access for everyone. JoAnna has been working in the design, product development, and accessibility fields for over 15 years. She has created a variety of inclusive digital experiences, changed policies, implemented inclusive development practices, and influenced culture in large organizations. She is a member of industry accessibility groups working to share knowledge and best practices and make accessible development practices more mainstream in several industries. Through her work in accessibility and education, and her background in interaction and information design JoAnna has become an influential change maker focused on delivering on the promise technology offers to those with a variety of physical and cognitive abilities. She is currently bringing her expertise to accessibility initiatives within Amazon Kindle.
Simon is an Accessibility Tester with NNELS from Nanaimo, BC. He was born completely blind and is a technology and accessibility enthusiast, audio producer, and an avid reader. He has experience with a wide variety of screen-readers and reading systems across desktop and mobile, and excellent working knowledge of audio formats, as well as ten years of audio editing and production experience. Before his position as an accessibility tester with NNELS, he spent more than 5 years training visually-impaired clients to get the most out of their computers, smartphones and other assistive technology.
George Kerscher Ph.D.
“Access to information is a fundamental human right.” 2003 to the United Nations
George Kerscher began his IT innovations in 1987 and coined the term “print disabled.” George is dedicated to developing technologies that make information not only accessible, but also fully functional in the hands of persons who are blind or who have a print disability. He believes properly designed digitally published materials and web pages can make information accessible to all people. George is an advocate for semantically rich content which can be used effectively by everybody.
As Chief Innovations Officer of the DAISY Consortium, Senior Advisor, Global Literacy to Benetech, and member of Publishing Groups in the W3C, Kerscher is a recognized international leader in document access. In addition, Kerscher chairs the DAISY/NISO Standards committee, Chairs the Steering Council of the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI), and also serves on the Advisory Board of the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).
David has worn many hats over the years, including news photographer, technical support analyst, media specialist, and photography instructor. Around the year 2000, when his sight began to decline, and reading print material became more difficult, his career path took a big shift.
David held several positions at BALANCE for Blind Adults, a non profit organization for people who are blind or have low vision. Those roles included, Volunteer Coordinator, IT Support, and Access Technology Instructor. Currently, he works as an accessibility tester for the National Network for Equitable Library Service (NNELS), evaluating the reading of EPUB files and the applications used to read them.
In his words, “Low vision can be difficult to understand because each individual’s perception dictates how and what they see, and as a result, what reading barriers they face.”
David is grateful to have the opportunity to contribute to the understanding of how people with low vision can better access information.
Kieran is the Executive Director of the Book Publishers Association of Alberta. Her background includes marketing, public relations, communications, human resource management and political organization. Kieran volunteers on several boards, and is a founding member of the Alberta Partners for Arts and Culture.
Amanda has been working with metadata and digital publishing for almost a decade. She has worked with large presses, small presses, independent presses and indie authors, as well as with retailers, distributors, and industry groups.
Ka is an Accessibility Tester for the National Network for Equitable Library Service (NNELS)
Farrah is the Content Coordinator at the National Network for Equitable Library Service (NNELS), a national digital library of accessible format materials that works with public libraries and publishers across Canada to ensure equal access to reading materials for all Canadians. She manages digital book production, acquisition, technical services, and various projects that aim to integrate accessibility into mainstream publishing practices.
Rémy is the Directeur des services au public at the Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec (BAnQ)
Sarah Mayes is the manager of the Support for Organizations’ component of the Canada Book Fund . The Canada Book Fund is responsible for the delivery of the five-year federal investment of $22.8 million to assist Canada’s independent book publishing industry in increasing the production and distribution of digital Canadian-authored accessible books. The Support for Organizations’ component of the program complements direct funding for publishing companies by funding collective projects that contribute to the marketing and promotion of Canadian-authored books and that strengthen the infrastructure of the Canadian book industry. Sarah has worked at the federal Department of Canadian Heritage in various roles since 2003. She is a graduate of the Master of Publishing program at Simon Fraser University and an avid reader of Canadian books.
Bryan is the National Account Manager for Recorded Books
Laetitia is an Accessibility Tester for the National Network for Equitable Library Service (NNELS).
Kevin is the Executive Director of the BC Libraries Cooperative
bob is the Manager of Alternative Education Resources for Ontario (AERO).
Monique has always been fascinated with the intersection of books and technology – from her start making fansites for her favourite books, to her current role as Project Manager at BookNet Canada. Monique also teaches ebook production at Ryerson University’s Chang School. Prior to joining BookNet, Monique worked in ebook production for Penguin Random House Canada.
Leigh is the publisher of Invisible Publishing. She currently serves as past chair for eBOUND Canada and secretary for the Association of Canadian Publishers, and chair of the ACP-eBOUND accessibility advisory panel. She received an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Guelph, and is the author of the poetry collection Goodbye, Ukulele.
Brendan is the Digital Project Manager at Annick Press; part of his work is managing e-book and audiobook production, metadata creation, and managing new developments in technology to bring our books to new audiences. He is also part of the Association of Canadian Publishers‘ Accessibility working group.
Katya Pereyaslavska (M.I., M.A.)
Katya is the Accessibility Librarian at Scholars Portal and a manager for the Accessible Content ePortal (ACE) which is a consortial service designed to make library collections accessible to users with print disabilities and currently offered across 43 Ontario universities and colleges. Katya has recently completed her secondment as a Visiting Program Officer at the Association of Research Libraries where her work included raising awareness around digital inclusion and publisher practices. She is deeply commitment to creating equal access opportunities to information to all library users.
Hugo was raised in a bicultural, trilingual home. He is both Mexican and German. He is, since 1990, CEO of Manual Moderno, which is a leading publishing house in the fields of medicine and psychology in Spanish language, based in Mexico City and with subsidiary offices in Bogota, Colombia. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from the National University in Mexico and an MBA degree from the IPADE Business School.
At present, Hugo is President of the International Publishers Association, where he also served as Vice-President for the term 2017-2018 and on its Executive Committee from 2004 to 2010 and from 2013 to 2018.
He has attended most IPA congresses since London 1988 and has participated as speaker or as session chair on several occasions.
He is currently an advisory board member of the Accessible Books Consortium, led by the World Intellectual Property Organization.
He has participated in the Mexican Publishers Association since 1995, where he has served on its executive board on several occasions and was Vice-President from 2004 to 2006 and from 2010 to 2013.
He served on the executive board of the International Association of Scientific Technical and Medical Publishers, STM, from 1998 to 2004.
Hugo was the founding chairman of the Mexican collective management organization, CeMPro, from 1998 to 2002. He obtained membership for CeMPro in the International Federation of Reproduction Rights Organizations, IFRRO, where he later served as member of its board of directors and chaired the committee for Latin America and the Caribbean (2000-2002).
Hugo lives in Mexico City, he is happily married and has two children.
Marjorie est présidente-directrice générale de Vues et Voix depuis près de 18 ans. D’une petite organisation subventionnée, sous sa présidence Vues et Voix est devenue une entreprise d’économie sociale fonctionnant avec aucune subvention. Madame Théodore est fortement engagée pour la mission de l’organisme Vues & Voix et pour d’autres projets humanitaires au plan international. Elle a une expérience de plus de vingt ans dans le développement de services et de produits éducatifs, culturels pour les populations avec des limitations visuelles, perceptuelles ou pour des raisons liées à un contexte social défavorisé. Depuis 2014, Marjorie Théodore a amené Vues et Voix a avoir un statut consultatif spécial du Conseil économique et social des Nations unies (ECOSOC).
Vues et Voix est une entreprise d’économie sociale inclusive qui oeuvre dans le domaine de l’audionumérique en produisant des livres audio adaptés pour les personnes vivant avec un handicap visuel, physique ou perceptif et également des livres audio pour tout le monde
Lindsay is the Senior Manager at the Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA) where she supports the amazing public libraries of Canada in their efforts to deliver library services to patrons with print disabilities. The best part of her job is speaking with readers and library staff across the country who share a commitment to accessible books and reading.
Heidi is the executive director of the Association of Book Publishers of BC, which represents the interests of 30 BC-owned publishing companies, and coordinates marketing, training, and business development initiatives on their behalf. She was previously the managing editor at Coach House Books, a literary press based in Toronto, where she was engaged in all aspects of the press’s publishing program, including editorial, production, sales and marketing, and digital publishing. Heidi completed the coursework in Simon Fraser University’s Master of Publishing program and an editorial internship at McClelland & Stewart. She holds a BA in English Literature from the University of British Columbia as well as a Certificate in Editing from Simon Fraser University.
Adam is the Program Manager of the Provincial Resource Centre for the Visually Impaired (PRCVI) and Accessible Resource Centre – BC (ARC-BC) in Vancouver, BC and is the current Chair of the Canadian Association of Educational Resource Centres for Alternate Format Materials (CAER). He is a teacher of visually impaired students and a certified orientation and mobility specialist by training and has a doctorate in Special Education from the University of British Columbia. Adam’s current work at PRCVI and ARC-BC is focused on knowledge translation and building capacity around digital accessibility and inclusive design in the K-12 education sector in British Columbia while also ensuring timely and equitable access to learning materials for students with perceptual disabilities from across the province.
Laura is the Director of Cross-Media at the House of Anansi Press.
Leah is the Accessible Publishing Coordinator for the National Network for Equitable Library Service, where she helps to improve the state of equitable reading in Canada. From organizing the Accessible Publishing Summit, to coordinating logistics for a variety of projects, to website maintenance and social media, Leah is passionate about using her skills and experience to work towards a more accessible and inclusive future. Leah has a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Studies from the University of Alberta, and a Master of Arts in Classical Studies from Memorial University of Newfoundland.
Paula is the Sales and Marketing Specialist for eBOUND Canada
Rachel is the Senior Director of Content Standards and Accessibility at Macmillan Learning. Her team works with colleges and universities to make sure that Macmillan is providing accessible and user friendly educational materials that any student can use and that conform to international accessibility standards.
Marisa is a software developer for the DAISY Consortium. She has worked on all aspects of the accessible ebook ecosystem, from reading software to standards and testing. Her current projects include Ace and epubtest.org, and she also chairs the W3C Synchronized Media for Publications Community Group. Outside of work, she volunteers with Rock n’ Roll Camp for Girls Los Angeles as an instructor and member of their executive team.
Sarah takes care of Communications for the DAISY Consortium.
Daniella is an expert in accessibility, including digital technology as well as livable spaces. She has been a user of assistive technologies for more than 25 years in her different roles in academic and professional settings. As the Coordinator for Accessibility Testing with the National Network for Equitable Library Service (NNELS), Daniella leads a team of testers who assess the accessibility of EPUB files and reading apps to access content through public libraries across Canada, and provides advice to prevent or eliminate barriers. Daniella works to promote and inform a paradigm shift towards accessible-by-design ebooks and platforms. Outside of the digital space, Daniella works to improve the accessibility of public spaces and advocates for pedestrian safety and the design and construction of streets which are useable for people of all abilities. She sits on the Steering Committee of Walk Toronto – a grassroots pedestrian advocacy group that works with various levels of government and community groups to improve walking conditions and safety in Toronto. Daniella holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Toronto and an MA in International Relations from the University of California, San Diego. Some of her previous roles include Senior Policy Analyst at the Council of Ontario Universities and Policy Advisor to the Mexican Minister of Foreign Relations.
Wendy is a Senior QA Analyst at Rakuten Kobo, working on the Technology Practice team to improve quality standards including security and accessibility. She is also one of the co-chairs of the W3C Publishing Working Group, and Editor of the Audiobooks specification. Passionate about accessibility in reading, she is excited to attend the summit for the second time!
Natalie Zend, MA
Natalie is the Principal at ZENDialogue, and an IAF CertifiedTM Professional Facilitator. She facilitates strategic conversations and multi-stakeholder collaborations with the aim of supporting the shift from work as usual to collective learning and innovation. She co-designed and co-facilitated the first Accessible Publishing Summit in 2019 and is thrilled to be supporting the next stage in the process.