GRADUCon 2021 - Careers in Publishing


Are you interested in working in the development and production of cutting-edge scholarly and creative written work? Do you enjoy using your skills in writing, editing, analysis, and project management?  If so, you may be interested in learning about the broad range of career possibilities in publishing. This panel will feature UChicago Masters and PhD alumni who work in a variety of roles in the publishing field, representing both academic presses and trade publishers. The panelists will speak about their career paths, their day-to-day work, provide of advice for students, postdocs, and alumni looking to explore these types of careers.


Susan Karani, Senior Production Editor, Stanford University Press (MA, Divinity School, University of Chicago, 2008; MA, Human Rights Studies, Columbia University, 2004)

Susan Karani is a senior production editor at Stanford University Press. Prior to that she was a production editor and manuscript editor at the University of Chicago Press, where she worked for over a decade. Since 2017, Susan has taught Introduction to Developmental Editing and Basic Manuscript Editing in the Editing Certificate Program at the University of Chicago Graham School. She also serves as a developmental editor and manuscript editor for various publishers including Harvard University Press and imprints of Penguin Random House. In addition, Susan is currently writing a style-guide workbook for copyeditors. She holds a BA and an MA from the University of Chicago, and an MA from Columbia University.

Catherine Goldstead, Associate Editor, Johns Hopkins University Press (MA, Humanities, University of Chicago, 2013)

Catherine Goldstead acquires books in literary studies and the ancient world for Johns Hopkins University Press. She regularly attends several annual academic conferences, including the Modern Language Association, the American Society for Eighteenth Century Studies, the Modernist Studies Association, and the Society for Classical Studies. Her career in academic publishing spans fifteen years and has encompassed editorial acquisitions, marketing, and subsidiary rights. Prior to coming to JHUP in 2013, Catherine earned a master’s in the humanities at the University of Chicago.

J.E. Luebering, Executive Editorial Director, Encyclopaedia Britannica (MA, English Language and Literature, University of Chicago, 2003)

J.E. is Executive Editorial Director at Encyclopaedia Britannica, which has its headquarters in Chicago. He oversees the team of editors, writers, and researchers who create content for and many of the company’s strategic initiatives. He has worked at Britannica since 2004 in several editorial roles.

Jonathan Baskin, Editor, The Point; Associate Director of Creative Publishing and Critical Journalism, The New School (PhD, Social Thought, University of Chicago, 2016)

Jon Baskin is a founding editor of The Point and the associate director of the Creative Publishing and Critical Journalism program at the New School for Social Research. He helped start The Point while a graduate student in the Committee on Social Thought in 2009. He is also the author of art and culture criticism for various publications, including The New Yorker, The New York Review of Books and The Nation.

Anna Paustenbach, Editor, HarperCollins (MA, Humanities, University of Chicago, 2012)

Anna Paustenbach is an Editor at HarperOne, an imprint of HarperCollins, acquiring adult nonfiction. She is the editor of books like New York Times bestsellers The Boy, The Mole, The Fox and The Horse and You Were Born For This. Previously she was a Production Editor at Phoenix Publications, working on children’s books, and before that she was an assistant at Folio Literary Agency as well as a grant writer at Esperanza Community Services in Chicago. She received her MA in the Humanities (MAPH) from the University of Chicago, and her undergraduate degree from Santa Clara University.


Levi Stahl, Marketing Director, University of Chicago Press

Levi Stahl is the Marketing Director of the University of Chicago Press, where he has worked since 1999. A former bookseller, he is also a board member of the Uptown People’s Law Center and editor of The Getaway Car: A Donald E. Westlake Nonfiction Miscellany and The Daily Sherlock Holmes, both published by the University of Chicago Press.