Small Press Traffic

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A Letter from Syd Staiti and the Board of Directors

Dear Friends,

I'm writing to share the news that I will be moving on from my role as director of Small Press Traffic by September 1, 2024. These past five years have been a wild and fulfilling journey. I am honored to have stewarded this organization so close to my heart, and led it to a place of stability and vitality in a challenging landscape. Now is the right time for a new director, with new ideas and fresh energy, to carry the organization forward. 

Since reaching this decision, I've been working closely with the board of directors, in particular our hiring committee (Sue Landers, Jackie Im, and Matt Sussman), on next steps. I have an enormous amount of trust in this team and in the board at large; I assure you they are conducting the search process with great attention and care. With six months until my tenure closes, I am committed to ushering the organization through the first half of its 50th anniversary year, the first full year of the Mellon-funded archive project, and to remain on-hand for the new director in their early months. 

Thank you, to all of SPT’s poets, artists, presenters, contributors, partners, funders, and community members, for trusting me with this unique and long-standing organization. It has been an all-consuming job, and deeply rewarding. I’m grateful for our time together, and excited to see what the future brings.  



Dear SPT community,

We, the board of Small Press Traffic, wish to express our profound gratitude for Syd’s phenomenal leadership. With deep care and intention, Syd has fostered collaborative, genre-defying programming, connected hundreds of writers and interdisciplinary artists with audiences, and extended SPT’s long tradition of pushing boundaries in the arts.

Syd stewarded SPT during a particularly momentous period, a time when many arts nonprofits have struggled to find their footing. He carried us through the pandemic, expanded SPT’s reach with online programming, led the redesign of our website, and stepped up to fill the gap in local and national arts writing by providing a home to The Back Room, an interdisciplinary publishing platform. 

Syd has been instrumental in garnering foundational support for an expanded suite of activities. Most recently he led the drive to secure a transformative gift from the Mellon Foundation with which we are building an archive of the Bay Area’s extraordinary history — in which Small Press Traffic has played no small part. All the while, Syd strengthened SPT’s infrastructure and operations — the vital yet often invisible and underappreciated labor that goes into running a nonprofit entity. We are grateful for these efforts, and so many others, and wish Syd all the best as he takes this next step. 

For fifty years, SPT has been a seedbed for innovative poetics. Throughout our history, we have been community-centered and artist-led, and today is no different. The search for our next director is now open. Please help us in this work by sharing this job description with your networks. 

Board of Small Press Traffic

Matt Sussman, President
Sue Landers, Secretary
Melissa Mack, Treasurer
Jackie Im
Krystal Languell
Aay Preston-Myint

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