University of Missouri Press will remain open

Aug 28, 2012

Updated 8/29/12 3:00 p.m.

The University of Missouri says it will keep its academic publishing business open and drop plans for a new reimagined publishing operation.

The university announced Tuesday the University of Missouri Press will stay in its current building and keep its current staff.

MU officials say the responsibility of running the Press will pass from the UM System, to the Columbia campus. Initially, people can expect the model to look the same, according to MU Provost Brian Foster.

This decision comes on the heels of a summer-long uproar to save the press by authors, faculty and academics. On May 24, UM System President Tim Wolfe announced the press would be shutting down and reopening in a reimagined model.

Speer Morgan, who had been slated to take over as director, will continue to direct The Missouri Review and he will have a leadership role in MU's media of the future program, according to MU spokesperson Mary Jo Banken. Dwight Browne will continue as interim director and all press employees have been asked to stay on, except former editor in chief, Clair Wilcox.

Administrators are moving quickly to put together an advisory committee to work with a transition team and the current press staff.  Foster says the ultimate goal of the committee is to help facilitate the gradual evolution of the press.

“And I’d like for us to be out front, given all our expertise on campus with media and that sort of thing. I’d like to have us to be out front and be a national model,” Foster said.

Nominations for the committee are being accepted now and Foster says the selections will be made within the next week.