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Press Staff

Dedra McDonald Birzer, Ph.D.
Press Director (Publisher and Editor-in-Chief)
Dedra.Birzer@state.sd.us │(605) 773-4371

Dedra McDonald Birzer joined the Press staff as director and editor-in-chief in late October 2020. As Press director she works with potential authors to shape their ideas into book proposals, reads submitted manuscripts, and leads a talented team that produces high quality books on the rich and varied history and culture of South Dakota and the Northern Great Plains.

Favorite Press Book: 
Laura Ingalls Wilder: A Writer's Life
By Pamela Smith Hill



Nancy Tystad Koupal
Pioneer Girl Project
Past Press Director, Editor-in-Chief (1997–2020)

The driving force behind the creation of the Press in 1997, Koupal now oversees the Pioneer Girl Project as a consultant. A program of the Press, the Pioneer Girl Project is dedicated to researching the life and works of Laura Ingalls Wilder. In addition to her work with Wilder's legacy, Koupal continues to be involved with the children's picture books.

Favorite Press Book:
The Voice of Liberty
Written by Angelica Shirley Carpenter
Illustrated by Edwin Fotheringham


Jennifer McIntyre
Marketing and Rights Director and Associate Editor
Jennifer.McIntyre@state.sd.us│(605) 773-8161

As marketing director, McIntyre implements promotional and marketing activities, including online presences and is the Press's publicity contact for author interviews, book signings, conferences, and marketing campaigns. She also handles production and inquiries on rights and permissions for Press publications, works on illustrations, and assists with acquiring, reviewing, and editing manuscripts.

Favorite Press Book:
Born Criminal: Matilda Joslyn Gage, Radical Suffragist
By Angelica Shirley Carpenter



Cody Ewert
Managing Editor 
Cody.Ewert@state.sd.us | (605) 773-2904

Ewert serves as the managing editor for South Dakota History and the SDHS Press. He acquires new titles, coordinates the peer review process, performs developmental editing and copyediting duties on manuscripts ahead of publication, and works closely with authors.

Favorite Press Book:
Equality at the Ballot Box: Votes for Women on the Northern Great Plains
Edited by Lori Ann Lahlum and Molly P. Rozum


Abby Wright
Production Coordinator & Associate Editor
Abby.Wright@state.sd.us | (605) 773-8380

As production coordinator, Wright collaborates with a team of designers, typesetters, indexers, illustrators, freelance writers, and Press editors to keep book and journal projects moving to and through the finish line. Wright also manages e-books and open-access projects, secures copyright permissions, assists with editing, and transmits final proofs to printers.

Favorite Press Book:
The South Dakota State Capitol: The First Century
by Marshall Damgaard


Sarah Dozier
Accounting Assistant and Order Fulfillment
Sarah.Dozier@state.sd.us│(605) 773-6009

In her job as accounting assistant, Dozier provides bookkeeping and accounting assistance for the State Historical Society's Research and Publishing Office. Sarah works with Press customers to fill orders and process returns. She also manages the on-site Press warehouse and inventory. Retailers and distributors, email orders@sdhspress.com to submit your purchase order.

Favorite Press Book:
Jumping-Off Place
By Marian Hurd McNeely
Afterword by Jean L. S. Patrick