Journals are first and foremost about people: the people who submit manuscripts for review; coordinate the peer-review process as an Editor or Associate Editor; act as peer reviewers or referees on submitted manuscripts; provide administrative support to the journal; and copy edit accepted manuscripts and turn them into articles that will be cited in what we call “the literature.” For a journal Editor, working with people can be very rewarding. It is a joy to work with an author who has something important to say but needs help in saying it and is willing to accept editorial guidance; to receive thoughtful and conscientious evaluations from reviewers and decision letters from Associate Editors; and to be able to rely on a copy editor who has the patience to polish an author's grammar, sentence structure, and style.
Over my years as Editor of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IDD), many people have made contributions to the journal. For various reasons, some have been unable to continue their service. Of those serving as Associate Editors during my time as Editor, Charlie Lakin, Marty Wyngaarden Krauss, Marsha Mailick Seltzer, Ed Helmstetter, and Joe Scotti have stepped down. I thank them for helping to make the journal what it is. I also welcome Susan Parish, David Helm, Marjorie Erickson Warfield, and Sheryl Larson, who have joined the journal as Associate Editors in recent years. The most recent addition as an Associate Editor is David Rotholz.
Life is almost always too short. Some of the Consulting Editors of the journal under my editorship have passed away. Gunnar Dybwad, Stan Herr, Gary Smith, Frank Bowe, Herb Lovett, and Elizabeth Boggs are among those who are no longer with us. I honor their memories and many contributions to the field, including their service to the journal.
Since becoming Editor, I have had the good fortune to have Yvette Taylor serve as the copy editor and production manager of the journal under its changing titles. This is not a case of nepotism. Contrary to the assumptions of some authors, Yvette and I are not related. She served in the same capacity for Mental Retardation (IDD's previous name) long before I became the Editor. Yvette is a delightful person and a first-rate copy editor. Her careful editorial work and patient and friendly approach with authors are noteworthy. She has combined professional competence with a gentle sense of humor. Anyone who has worked closely with Yvette probably has a favorite story to tell about her. Mine is her distress immediately after the 2000 presidential election when she was convinced that she voted for the wrong person on the notorious Florida butterfly ballot.
As a copy editor for the journal, Yvette has found a balance between insisting on high standards and allowing authors flexibility when a rigid application of stylistic requirements did not fit their form of writing and would have stifled their creativity. This has been especially important in the “Perspectives” section of the journal in which I have encouraged submissions from people who do not ordinarily write for professional and research journals.
After many years of service to the journal, Yvette has stepped down from her role. I will miss her and am sure that many regular contributors will as well. Thank you, Yvette.
Yvette Taylor can never be replaced, but her former role is in capable hands. Stephanie Dean is the new Managing Editor of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. She has degrees from Vanderbilt and Johns Hopkins and a wealth of experience as a technical editor and supervisor of editing and production for the American Psychological Association and other associations and their journals. I look forward to working with Stephanie and trust that she will help continue the journal's tradition of publishing quality research alongside thought-provoking and interesting commentaries and essays.
Journals are about people, and this journal has benefited from the contributions of many.
Author: Steven J. Taylor, PhD, Director, Center on Human Policy, School of Education, Syracuse University, 805 S. Crouse Ave., Syracuse, NY 13244. firstname.lastname@example.org