1. Nelson-Hogan, Debra


The journal's production manager celebrates 55 years of service.


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Josephine Esposito rules AJN's board, a specially made production-control system handcrafted by a cabinetmaker nearly 30 years ago, on which she creates a layout of each issue. On said board, cards marking editorial and advertising pages slip into steel slots lined against the wall. It's a system that allows Ms. Esposito to control production-a practical artistry that computers can't compete with. FIGURE 1

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Ms. Esposito has a keen appreciation of what technology can and cannot do. And for good reason: she's been in the publishing business from the days of letterpress printing through the reign of desktop publishing. She has been with AJN for 55 years and is a veteran at keeping the journal in focus.


"World War II had ended in Europe but not in the Pacific, and like many young women of that time, I was looking for work," says Ms. Esposito. A friend recommended AJN, and on June 22, 1945, she began work in a company of about 50 employees, only one of whom was male. She worked as a clerk in the subscription department, from which $3 bought a one-year subscription to AJN. Working on the "addressograph" machine, she prepared name-plates with subscribers' names for mailing. Later, in the circulation department, she received one particularly memorable letter that said, "Please cancel my subscription. I've developed leprosy and I'm going to a leper colony."


Ms. Esposito has worked in other departments (accounting, purchasing, business, production, the mailroom) and in a number of office buildings. "When New York City lost all electrical power in 1965," she says, "the office was on the 25th floor of the Coliseum Building. I decided to wait it out with a pregnant coworker and a few others who couldn't walk downstairs. At midnight, my husband Salvatore came to the rescue." He walked up 24 floors to bring food and drink and then drove everyone home after the lights went on at 3 AM. The pregnant woman safely delivered twins the following month.


In 55 years, she has witnessed her fair share of company achievements (and scandals), and her commitment to the journal has been constant. As production manager, Ms. Esposito has worked with many AJN editors, among them Mary Roberts, Nell V. Beeby, and Edith Lewis. She has been involved in the birth of other nursing journals, namely The AJN Career Guide, International Nursing Index, Nursing Research, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing, Geriatric Nursing, and Nursing Outlook.


Ms. Esposito has been a member of the Association of Publication Production Managers since 1974 and has won several graphic arts awards. Thelma Schorr, president and publisher of AJN, and Mary Mallison, editor, named her Production Woman of the Year in 1981, for her extraordinary performance and outstanding professionalism.


In addition to her professional responsibilities, Ms. Esposito cares for her husband, using the nursing knowledge she's gained from her years at the journal. She also puts her beautiful singing voice (she's an operatic soprano) to good use, frequently singing at charity and church events.


On AJN's 100th anniversary, Ms. Esposito says she is "proud to be a part of the journal's past, present, and future, working with editor-in-chief Diana Mason and for one of the world's finest publishers, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins."


-Debra Nelson-Hogan