SIBA Creates Pat Conroy Scholarships, Sponsored by Penguin Random House

SIBA CREATES PAT CONROY SCHOLARSHIPS, SPONSORED BY PENGUIN RANDOM HOUSE

The Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) is pleased to announce the creation of The Pat Conroy Scholarships in honor of the late author whose lifetime achievements have meant so much to Southern booksellers.  The scholarships, which will be bestowed to two booksellers annually in each of the next four years, are made possible by Penguin Random House, whose Nan A. Talese/Doubleday, Dial Press Trade Paperbacks, and Random House Audio imprints publish Mr. Conroy’s works in hardcover, paperback, and audio editions respectively.

These scholarships are designated specifically for booksellers who have never attended a SIBA Discovery Show, held in September, in keeping with the Penguin Random House’s fifteen-year tradition of supporting educational programming for booksellers at the event.  The scholarships will cover up to $1,000 of the winner’s travel, hotel, and meal expenses for the Discovery Show first-timers.  To be eligible, a bookseller must be a full-time employee of a SIBA-member bookstore, working at any level or capacity.

SIBA Executive Director Wanda Jewell said, “We believe that nurturing the next generation of career booksellers is one of the best things we can do to advance the future of bookselling.  These scholarships Penguin Random House is endowing, which deepen and expands this mutual commitment to foster education at the Discovery Show, are forward-looking, and will mean a lot to every SIBA bookseller.  How appropriate that these awards honor Pat Conroy, who was so kind and generous with all of us, and in particular, to those new to our industry.”

“Pat Conroy is a beloved Penguin Random House author,” said Jaci Updike, President, Sales, Penguin Random House, “and it is a privilege for us to honor his legacy in a manner that benefits new booksellers.  Pat deeply loved books and the men and women who sell them and would be made very happy and proud to have an opportunity to enhance their professional education.” 

Pat Conroy’s A LOW COUNTRY HEART: Reflections on a Writing Life, a new nonfiction collection of pieces spanning the author’s long literary career, has been announced for posthumous hardcover and e-book publication by Nan A. Talese/Doubleday on October 25, one day before his 71st birthday.

To be considered for a Pat Conroy Scholarship, booksellers can self-nominate, or be nominated by other booksellers or sales reps. Owners and managers are strongly encouraged to nominate frontline booksellers who are interested in bookselling as a career. The deadline for nominations for the 2016 Pat Conroy Scholarships is July 15, 2016.

Scholarship recipients will be announced on August 1.

The 2016 SIBA Discovery show will be held September 16-18 at the Hilton DeSoto in Savannah, Georgia.

To apply, the nominated bookseller should fill out the information below, and email it to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

  • YES! I have never been to SIBA and I would love to go.
  • Name
  • Address
  • E-mail address
  • Bookstore: where do you work? How long have you worked there and what is your current role?
  • Make Pat Conroy proud! Please write a short (two paragraphs is ideal) description of why you love being a bookseller and what you hope to get out of SIBA.