TORONTO, June 22 /CNW/ - Ellen Seligman, Publisher (Fiction) and Senior
Vice President of McClelland and Stewart, has been elected as the new
President of PEN Canada. Seligman was chosen as the successor to journalist
and film maker Nelofer Pazira at PEN Canada's 2009 Annual General Meeting,
June 20, at Massey College.
"Freedom of expression is something most of us take for granted but
should not - even here in Canada," said Seligman. "PEN's work at home and
abroad to protect this basic human right and to free writers who have been
incarcerated and rendered silent is absolutely vital, and ongoing."
Born and raised in New York City, Seligman moved to Canada in 1976 after
working in literary publishing in London and New York. Her distinguished
publishing career has been marked by a passionate commitment to writers and to
writing. "For most of my working life," she says, "I have been closely allied
with nurturing a diversity of creative voices. I have been steeped in the
richness of these voices and in the idea that they can and will be heard."
Seligman has been called "the Maxwell Perkins of Canadian publishing."
She edits such well-known writers as Margaret Atwood, Elizabeth Hay, Michael
Ondaatje, Anne Michaels, Rohinton Mistry, and is also active in finding and
developing the work of writers at the beginning of their careers.
Seligman won the Canadian Booksellers' Association's inaugural Editor of
the Year Award in 1998 and again in 2006. She has received the Toronto Arts
Award for her contribution to the field of writing and publishing (the first
person in publishing to receive an award in this category), and she has been
profiled in the Globe and Mail, Toronto Life, and, most recently, in the
National Post - where she was also described as one of Canada's fifty most
influential women. In 2009, she was awarded the Order of Ontario.
As a Board member for the last three years (two as Vice-President),
Seligman has worked tirelessly for and has already contributed significantly
to PEN Canada.
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