Inside MAI Blog: Thoughts on global publishing

Following in David's footsteps

“He is such a gentleman,” my wife, Elsa, commented after meeting the late David Alexander during a trip to the UK. David was indeed that, and much more.

At a time when most Christian publishers were targeting churched readers only, David and his wife, Pat, launched Lion Publishing in 1971 with a vision to publish Christian books for the general market. 

David worked from home to produce samples of the first projects, which he took to the Frankfurt Book Fair. A positive response from publishers in a number of countries led to the launch of Lion Publishing. International from the start, the small company grew quickly, with added impetus from its first major project, The Lion Handbook to the Bible. Since David's death in 2002, the Lion imprints have continued with the same aim, now as part of Lion Hudson, following a recent merger.

During his distinguished publishing career, David often encouraged and advised authors in the developing world. Consequently, after his death in 2002, an anonymous donor created an author fund to honor David’s life and work.

Grants from the David Alexander International Author Fund are awarded to selected Christian writers who are working on book manuscripts for general readers. MAI is privileged to administer this author fund, and so far grants have been given to 13 international Christian authors.

The two most recent David Alexander International Author Fund recipients are:

* Ruth (not her real name), a public-health worker in a closed country of Southeast Asia, who is writing her remarkable life story to share her testimony with unchurched readers

*Joanna Ilboudo of Burkina Faso, writing several pieces of fiction based on her experiences in holistic ministry to widows and orphans, saying “my imagination is filled with their life stories.” 

I’m thankful that Elsa and I had the opportunity to meet and know David, but especially grateful that his memory lives on through the author-fund recipients who share his vision of taking Christian truth into the public marketplace.

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