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Our Team

Learn about the members who make up the Simon & Schuster publishing team.

Rosemary Shipton, Executive Editor

In Rosemary Shipton’s long and distinguished career in publishing, she has edited hundreds of books, many of which have won major Canadian prizes for nonfiction. Her authors, including Katerina Atanassova, Jean Chrétien, Marq de Villiers, Modris Eksteins, John English, David Hackett Fischer, Bill Graham, J.L. Granatstein, Richard Gwyn, Roy McMurtry, David O’Keefe, Anna Porter, Kent Roach, and David Silcox, regard her as a true partner in developing and polishing their manuscripts for publication. She was the founding co-director of the very successful Publishing Program at Toronto Metropolitan University (formerly Ryerson University) and led it for 17 years. Rosemary has won several editing and teaching awards and was granted an honorary doctorate by Trinity College, University of Toronto, for her contribution to publishing in Canada. She is looking for books on current affairs (especially the people, ideas, and trends behind them), biography / memoir, true crime, art and culture—in particular, riveting stories that readers will enjoy.

Jim Gifford, Executive Editor

Jim Gifford has worked in publishing since 1997, joining Simon & Schuster as Executive Editor in 2023. Previously, he spent nineteen years at HarperCollins Canada, where he commissioned, acquired, and edited non-fiction titles for the Canadian program. His biggest recent success has been Tara Westover’s international bestseller Educated, as well as Mark Sakamoto’s Forgiveness and Max Eisen’s haunting Holocaust memoir By Chance Alone, both of which won CBC Canada Reads. Other authors Jim has worked closely with include Lloyd Robertson, Ron MacLean, Dr. Marla Shapiro, Mellissa Fung, Nazanin Afshin-Jam, Curtis Joseph, Linden MacIntyre and Jay Ingram. He has also worked at Thomas Allen Publishers, Stoddart Publishing, and Thomas Nelson. Jim looks for big, unique stories and fresh, new voices in science, sports (mainly hockey), history, military history, business, cultural studies, and memoir, with a special interest in working with diverse authors from underserved communities, whose stories we should all know.

Brittany Lavery, Senior Editor

Brittany Lavery has worked in publishing since 2009, joining Simon & Schuster as Senior Editor in 2022. Previously, she spent seven years at Graydon House Books, an imprint of Harlequin/HarperCollins, where she acquired commercial fiction, working with bestselling authors such as Tarryn Fisher, Karen Hamilton, and Jenny Lecoat. She has also worked for Penguin Random House Canada and the University of Toronto Press. Brittany is looking for upmarket book club fiction that feels ripped from the headlines and starts a conversation; family dramas with intergenerational perspectives and ensemble casts; immigrant and refugee stories; novels that prioritize a queer perspective; commercial fiction with a strong hook, including literary/commercial crossover fiction; smart and fresh suspense; and narrative non-fiction, particularly in the areas of feminism, LQBTQIA+ issues, social justice, memoir, and nature writing. In all categories, she is looking for diverse and underrepresented voices. 

Adrienne Kerr, Senior Editor

Adrienne Kerr joined Simon & Schuster Canada as Senior Editor in 2022. She spent a decade at Penguin Canada, where she acquired and edited commercial fiction, working with bestselling authors such as John le Carré, Stuart McLean, Gail Honeyman, Fiona Barton, Guy Gavriel Kay, Jack Whyte, A.S.A. Harrison, Ishmael Beah, Emma Hooper, Joseph Kertes, Robert J. Sawyer, Brooke Davis, Eric McCormack, Emily Bitto, and Gabrielle Zevin. Adrienne has also been a publisher’s sales rep, a book buyer for a national chain, and a bookseller. She’s looking for psychological thrillers, upmarket women’s fiction, atmospheric historical fiction, and literary/commercial crossovers, and appreciates distinctive voices and crisp prose. In non-fiction, she’s interested in memoir, personal essays, social justice, and nature writing.

Jasmine Elliott, Managing Editor

Jasmine Elliott is the managing editor at Simon & Schuster Canada. Prior to joining in 2019, she worked for many years as a freelance editor. Jasmine is proud to assist in ushering all Simon & Schuster Canada titles with care and passion from acquisition to print, and takes particular interest in upmarket romance, literary/commercial crossover fiction, novels and narrative nonfiction from queer perspectives, anything with a hint of the gothic, and everything from diverse and underrepresented voices.

Kaitlyn Lonnee, Assistant Managing Editor

Kaitlyn Lonnee began as an Editorial Assistant at Simon & Schuster Canada in September 2022 and was promoted to Assistant Managing Editor in the fall of 2023. Before joining the company, she completed an undergraduate degree in creative writing at Western University and a graduate certificate in creative book publishing at Humber College. Kaitlyn loves to read anything and everything but particularly enjoys horror, fantasy, sci-fi, literary speculative fiction, gothic, thrillers, folklore, and stories with spunky, complicated female characters and queer themes.

Grace O’Connell, Assistant Editor

Grace O’Connell joined Simon & Schuster Canada in 2024. She was previously the Senior Editor for Open Book, an online Canadian literary news outlet. Grace taught creative writing for over ten years in the University of Toronto’s School of Continuing Studies, mentoring student writers and specializing in short fiction and the novel. She also spent time teaching at the University of Guelph and George Brown College. She has worked as a freelance editor and writer with work in The Globe & Mail, the Toronto Star, The Walrus, and other outlets, and is the author of two novels. She is looking for unique and powerful memoirs, literary fiction, upmarket women’s fiction that engages with complex issues, fresh and funny romantic comedies, smart, surprising thrillers and mysteries, and character-driven fantasy and folklore. Grace is looking for authentic, clean, clear writing from all and is especially interested new voices and writers from underrepresented communities.

Hunter Sleeth, Administrative Assistant

Hunter Sleeth is the Administrative Assistant at Simon & Schuster Canada. Before joining in November 2022, she completed a BA in Book & Media Studies at U of T and an MLitt in Publishing Studies at the University of Stirling in Scotland. Hunter loves to read just about anything, with a particular interest in horror, fantasy, folklore, and Greek mythology retellings.