Many were no doubt surprised and saddened by the news that Sally Dedecker passed away on Monday night.
Sally was a close friend, and an extraordinary asset to the publishing industry. So many have since come out to talk about the ways that Sally impacted their life, their work, and themselves.
In September, I had the honor of presenting her with the BISG Lifetime Service Award. I spoke of Sally’s many achievements and contributions to BISG and the entire book industry. I was speaking on behalf of all of her many friends at BISG:
As we continue to reinvent BISG, there's no better example of what our core values mean in practice than Sally Dedecker. For more than half of the time that BISG has been serving the industry, Sally has been serving BISG.
Her knowledge and experience make her invaluable to this organization and the publishing industry as a whole.
As seen through her work with BookExpo, uPublishU, BISG, and more, Sally’s collaborative nature has helped publishers, authors, readers, and so many others connect for meaningful conversations that help our industry move forward.
In a sense, Sally is an unsung hero, with an incredible breadth of knowledge. Through her comprehensive consultant agency, Sally Dedecker Enterprises, Sally has helped provide solutions in distribution, sales, marketing, product development, among other areas of the digital and print publishing process. As many of you know, she has also developed and curated the educational conferences for BookExpo America.
When asked about Sally, Maureen McMahon said, "If I had to describe Sally Dedecker in one word, it would be 'unstoppable.' Her combination of industry knowledge, energetic problem solving, and generous friendship put her at the top of the list of colleagues we turn to for advice -- or when we just need a dose of Sally's no-holds-barred candor. You can always count on Sally to tell it like it is."
No task has been too small, no project has been too big for Sally. She has looked at our business as if it were her own, because truly, it has been. Sally has dedicated her life to this industry, and has made an incredible impact.
Sally once again chaired this year's jury to select the recipients of BISG's 2017 awards. We couldn't tell her that we'd also picked out one for her. I am happy, proud, and honored, to present Sally Dedecker with the 2017 Lifetime Service Award, given by all of her colleagues, past and present, who know all the many and amazing things she has done to make BISG work for its members and for our industry.
I will miss my friend. I know we all will. She made an enormous difference in our lives, for which I will always be grateful.
—Dominique Raccah, CEO and Publisher, Sourcebooks