The Scholastic Corporation is an American publishing corporation that for the most part specializes in educational and children’s publications. Led by Richard Robinson the President, Chairman of the Board and chief executive Officer, Scholastic stays successful mainly due to its foresight and planning for its future. The company was formed in 1920 when the father of the now president of the company first published a magazine named The Western Pennsylvania Scholastic. In 1926 the company published its first book and hasn’t looked back since. In 1948 the company established itself in school book clubs and published cheap paperback books to provide books for these clubs. In 1957 Scholastic expanded into Canada and later, in the 1960s also expanded into England, New Zealand and Australia cementing its’ name as a truly international publishing corporation.
In 1974 the current president took over the reins from his father and has held those reins tightly ever since, successfully taking the company into continued success. Maureen O’Connell Scholastic Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Chief Administration Officer and Executive Vice President for the corporation is one of the main people in assisting the corporations CEO in leading the company to continued success. Helping to plan a company’s future is often a task which falls to the CFO as they are probably the best ones to know how much can afford to be spent on the company’s future but they are also asked to assist due to their knowledge of both accounting and the business in which the company is involved. In the case of O’Connell, as well as being an experienced and accomplished accountant, she already had plenty of experience in the publishing business prior to joining Scholastic in 2007 as she had already been the CFO for two of the country’s leading publishers, the Publishers Clearing House from 1998 to 2000 and Barnes and Noble from 2000 to 2002 plus other publishing companies.
Combining these two assets, experience in accounting and experience in publishing businesses makes O’Connell a great advisor to Scholastic’s president when planning for the corporation’s future and is recognized by the fact that she also holds the other positions in the company. Among the company’s more recent successes is the purchase, in 1997, of the Harry potter American publishing rights and as Harry Potter is one of today’s leading best sellers and each new title continues to be, the company is thriving. This recent great success though has not diminished the corporation’s interests in education though and so it continues to provide book clubs in schools throughout the US and other countries. To further its interest in providing educational publications, the corporation also hosts book fairs throughout the country in an effort to increase children’s awareness of books in a world that has for the great part gone digital. With the help of the CFO O’Connell, the corporation hopes to continue into the future with as much success as it has experienced in its past and yet still maintain its interest in the education of children.