We’re very excited to announce the newest addition to the Capstone family – Ashley Andersen Zantop, our new Group Publisher/General Manager. Welcome Ashley!
Ashley brings more than 20 years experience in publishing, plus a background in education, to her new role. Ashley took a break from the excitement of the Bologna Book Fair this week to answer a few questions about her new job and herself…
First of all, congratulations! You received your official Minnesota welcome last week, starting your new job in the midst of a typical Minnesota snowstorm.
Ashley: Yes, now that I've already officially agreed to move here, Tom Ahern [Capstone CEO] advised me this snow storm was typical July weather for Minnesota. Hmmm.
What most excites you about your new job?
Ashley: There are so many exciting opportunities with this position, but I am most excited about working with this group of fantastic people. It's truly exceptional in this industry to have so many great people at one company.
What’s been your first order of business? And what are your plans or goals for Capstone’s future?
Ashley: My first order of business is to learn everyone's names! As for the future, we have a tremendous opportunity to capitalize on and extend the success that Capstone has had (and will continue to have) in its core markets as well as continuing to develop into other markets and channels.
How did you get started in publishing? Your background in publishing is quite extensive and varied – you’ve done everything from editing to graphic design to finance.
Ashley: I started in publishing at a tender age as an indentured servant to my family's publishing business. Eventually, I realized children's publishing would be the best way to combine my love of and background in elementary education with my love of books, so I left my family's business to work exclusively in children's publishing.
Because of my early experiences in almost every side of my family's business, I've developed an affinity and appreciation for a number of aspects of the business.
What do you love about working in publishing?
Ashley: I love that publishing is an art form itself. Combining the elements we traditionally think of as artistic – manuscripts, illustrations, graphics, music, narration, etc. – with the business of producing salable, profitable products is an art.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself, your family?
Ashley: My husband is a 3rd and 4th grade teacher. He's a super dad, and is THRILLED to make the move to Minneapolis. We are both Big Ten alums.
What do you like to do in your free time?
Ashley: I'm a mother to a one-year-old, I don't understand the question. Seriously, I like to hike, travel with my family, read, eat, and see bad movies.
What’s the latest book you’ve read? Latest Capstone book?
Ashley: I just re-read "To Kill a Mockingbird." The most recent Capstone book I read was "Bunny Eats Lunch."