Francesco Sedita joined Penguin in 2008 as the publisher of Grosset & Dunlap, Price Stern Sloan ,and Frederick Warne, where he focuses on creating a quality, affordable book program for children ages 0-12. Francesco is fortunate to publish authors like Ann Hood, Andrew Keenan-Bolger and Kate Whetherhead, Giada De Laurentiis, Nancy Krulik, Henry Winkler, Emma Thompson, and (13 year old) Jake Marcionette. He also oversees the licensed publishing area which includes greats like Strawberry Shortcake, Skylander, and the incomparable Cartoon Network.
He attended New York University’s Gallatin School, where he studied writing and graduated with his MFA. He began his career in publishing in the publicity department of Alfred A. Knopf, and then moved to Scholastic, where he worked in the school reading clubs and then moved to the trade division as the Creative Director. During this time, he developed and oversaw the marketing and creative campaign for the final book in the Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the launch of which broke every sales record in the publishing industry.
Francesco has worked with the board of 826NYC, Dave Eggers’ nonprofit organization, dedicated to supporting children develop their writing skills. He also wrote and directed interstitials that appear on NBC Saturday Morning, Telemundo and Qubo, aimed at helping children discover the joys of reading.
Lori Burke has been working in the licensing field specific to the children's publishing industry for the past fifteen years. In the last decade, she has had the pleasure of working on licensed tie-in book programs and children’s publishing at DK Publishing, Scholastic, and Penguin Group . Now, at Penguin Young Readers Group, she works alongside editors, designers, and a variety of talented authors and artist as the Executive Director of Licensing Acquisitions and Media.