News & Opinion

The 2022 Jack Covert Award for Contribution to the Business Book Industry

Sally Haldorson

January 12, 2023

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Barbara Cave Henricks is the recipient of the 2022 Jack Covert Award.

Our annual book awards exist to shine a light on the best business books of any given year. But as all of us who are in the industry know, the work that goes into the creating and selling of those books involves a host of unsung people and begins years before the books reach the hands of a reader.

First the book is a gleam in the author’s eye; then a query in an agent’s inbox; then a series of revisions sent from the editor’s hand; copy edits and proofing and fact checking and cover art and printing follow. Then there’s the engine behind the scenes driving interest in the book—utilizing the author’s platform, publicist meetings, publicity campaigns, marketing strategies, distribution plans, sales metrics. There is a mighty army of cooks in every book’s kitchen, each one essential to the success of each book. And with each book they work on, year after year, these people make up the industry.

And that’s why the Jack Covert Award for Contribution to the Business Book industry exists. To recognize the people who, like our founder, Jack Covert, contribute in the overall evolution of a genre that we all believe is critical to the improvement of people’s work lives, to the success of businesses, to the development of a broader culture that can respond positively to crises, large and small.

For books to have that kind of impact, for an industry to have that kind of impact, books and the authors who write them need to reach an audience. The books quite literally need to get in the hands, and the ideas in the minds, of those who are most open to change. And to do that? We need publicists. Really talented publicists who know how to build a wind behind the back of a good book and push it into the public eye where it belongs. And one of the very best publicists in our industry, one who has worked with such business names as Jack Welch, Tom Rath, Seth Godin, Ram Charan, and Joann Lublin, is Barbara Cave Henricks. In fact, when our own company wrote The 100 Best Business Books of All Time for Portfolio, we turned to Barbara for publicity.

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Once a journalist, Barbara left her job editing and producing the news at NBC Radio, moved to New York and into publishing. After stints at Workman Publishing and Houghton Mifflin Company, she became publicity director at Goldberg McDuffie Communications where she created and led the business book division. In 2007, Barbara opened her own firm, Cave Henricks Communications, which represents about 25 nonfiction titles and authors a year. She now guides a team who are every bit as caring and deliberate and motivated to drive a book’s success as she has always been.

Just months before Jack passed away in 2021, he wrote an email to me noting that “BTW Barbara should be the next.” So we are proud, in Jack’s stead, to give the Jack Covert Award for Contribution to the Business Book Industry to Barbara Cave Henricks!

 

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If you'd like to learn more about the books we chose as the best of the past year, we have a page online dedicated to the 2022 Porchlight Business Book Awards, and have produced a PDF of all the winners, as well.

And, if you couldn't watch the announcement as it happened, you can still view our virtual awards presentation online.

About Sally Haldorson

Sally’s mission as Porchlight’s Managing Director is to make Porchlight a great place to work for employees, and a consistently high-performing service organization for everyone in or orbiting the publishing industry. Over her 25 years with the company, she has developed a penchant for business strategy, organizational management, and the history and evolution of business, both as a socio-economic force and a literary genre. She helped craft three editions of The 100 Best Business Books of All Time, and has a Masters in English. Outside of work, she is likely to be reading, cooking, playing tennis, and hanging out with her husband, son, and two dogs.

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