The Midwest Independent Booksellers Association advances the success of independent bookstores, fosters partnerships that create a strong bookselling and publishing community, and celebrates the vital literary culture of our region.
MIBA is a regional nonprofit trade association established in 1981 to promote retail bookselling and support independent booksellers throughout our region. Our members include locally owned and operated independent bookstores; book publishers, distributors, reps, and vendors who do business with our bookstores; and other individuals and businesses allied to the book industry, such as media, librarians, and teachers. With over 225 members, including nearly 200 bookstores, we represent a substantial portion of the region. Our member states include Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. Additional member stores are in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.
We are governed by a seven-member board of directors that includes five booksellers and two representatives from the publishing community. Board members serve three-year terms, while our four officers (president, vice president, treasurer, and secretary) serve two-year terms. Our paid staff includes an Executive Director.
I’ve had a love affair with books my whole life. In grade school, my favorite time of day was SQUIRT, otherwise known as Super Quiet Uninterrupted Independent Reading Time. In college, I studied literature and creative writing at a small school in Wisconsin, then headed to the big city to get a master’s degree in literary theory from New York University. While there, I began my career in publishing, working as a copyeditor and acquisitions editor as I moved to Chicago and then Minneapolis working for independent publishers. I couldn’t be happier in my role directing MIBA. I believe independent bookstores are that “great good place” (to quote Ray Oldenburg), essential to creating vibrant communities and sustaining literary culture.
I grew up in Portland, Oregon, which seems to have resulted in an abundant love of both reading and the outdoors–especially both at once. I studied creative writing at the University of Montana in Missoula and earned a Master of Arts in English from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. As a professional writer and editor I’ve worked in a variety of situations: for instance, I was once a part-time publicist for an art gallery and have also served as the senior editor for a business-writing firm. Currently, in addition to my role as the Executive Assistant at MIBA, I’m the Managing Editor at Rain Taxi Review of Books, where I support the daily operations of the literary magazine and coordinate the exhibits for the Twin Cities Book Festival.
Board of Directors
Our board includes five booksellers and two representatives from the publishing community. Board members serve three-year terms, while our four officers (president, vice president, treasurer, and secretary) serve two-year terms.
President. Tripp Ryder has been a bookseller for 34 years, beginning her career at Fine Print Books in Northfield, MN, serving as manager for her last two years there. She has been at the Carleton College Bookstore in Northfield for the last 24 years. As general books manager, she oversees the trade department, arranges author events, and works with Carleton faculty and departments on campus events and special projects. Tripp has served on the National Association of College Stores General Books Committee, chairing the committee her last year. She has been on the board of the Northfield League of Women Voters, volunteers regularly with the Northfield Downtown Development Corporation, and actively participates in local and regional political campaigns. firstname.lastname@example.org
Vice President. Kathy Borkowski has been the director of the Wisconsin Historical Society Press since 2004, which publishes titles on Wisconsin history and culture. The Press is Wisconsin’s oldest publisher (established in 1855) and often partners with local organizations promoting books such as the Wisconsin Book Festival and the Wisconsin Center for the Book. Prior to her current position, Kathy worked for American Girl, publisher of historical fiction books for young readers. Kathy.Borkowski@
Treasurer. Jim Nichols, vice president of sales for Consortium Book Sales & Distribution, has worked in publishing since 1992 in Tokyo and New York. At Consortium he directs US sales operations for publishing clients in the US, Canada, UK, Europe, Asia, and Australia. He has been a member of the MIBA board since 2007. email@example.com
Secretary. Jennifer Wills Geraedts has been in and out of the book business since her twenties, working for a number of bookstores, including Sister Wolf Books in Dorset, MN. Following her parents’ purchase of Sister Wolf Books, Jennifer attended her first MIBA trade show and realized the flirtation was over. After finishing her law degree, she accepted a position as the young adult librarian at the Park Rapids Area Library. In 2007, the owner of Beagle Books in Park Rapids, MN retired, Jennifer’s parents bought the store, and Jen has been managing the store ever since. firstname.lastname@example.org
Greg Danz, a graduate of Moorhead State University, went straight into the book world after college working at Bookmen in Minneapolis. Since 1989, he has owned and operated Zandbroz Variety in Sioux Falls, SD and Fargo, ND along with his wife Renee and brother Jeff. Zandbroz has hosted hundreds of authors and promoted books and literacy with passion. Greg is active in the Fargo community, serving on the Fargo/Moorhead Chamber of Commerce, Riverkeepers, Downtown Community Partnership, New Rivers Press, and the Fargo Theatre. He and his wife and two grown children, Castle and Josepha. email@example.com
Nancy Simpson-Brice serves as consultant at Book Vault in Oskaloosa, Iowa. Book Vault was opened in 2006 in a beautifully renovated historic bank building in downtown Oskaloosa, IA. Having graduated from both Iowa State University and the University of Iowa, Nancy holds a masters degree in library and information science. She worked as an elementary teacher, on staff at the Marion Public Library, as director of the Oskaloosa Public Library, and as founder and manager of Book Vault bookstore. She serves on the All Iowa Reads committee that each year selects the one book that all Iowans read. She and her husband Michael live on their own piece of paradise near Oskaloosa, IA. firstname.lastname@example.org
David Enyeart has worked with books for over a decade–at a publisher, at a distributor, and at bookstores. He cut his bookselling teeth at Magers & Quinn, and is currently the assistant manager at Common Good Books in St. Paul, MN. He cranks down the awnings, straightens the shelves, and arranges author events. You can reach David at email@example.com.