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Donna McBride
(? - living) U.S.A.

Donna McBride

Publisher

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In 1971, Donna McBride had begun to work as a volunteer for The Ladder. A reference librarian at the Kansas City, Missouri, public library, McBride first knew Grier as a library patron who made frequent and numerous recommendations of books of lesbian interest that she wanted the library to buy. Impressed with Grier's work as a bibliographer, editor, and writer, McBride sought her out. The two soon fell in love. They became life partners in the same year.

After The Ladder ceased publication, a new opportunity arose for McBride and Grier. Two of the magazine's subscribers, Anyda Marchant and Muriel Crawford, wanted to start a lesbian publishing company and asked McBride and Grier to run it. "Naiad Press" got off to a modest beginning in January 1973. Grier and McBride ran the operation from their home near Kansas City.

McBride and Grier moved to Tallahassee, Florida in 1980. "Naiad Press" had been growing from year to year, but both women continued to hold other full-time jobs to support themselves as they developed the business. In 1982 both began working exclusively for Naiad. The press burgeoned into the world's largest lesbian publisher.

Having spent some thirty years in the publishing business, McBride and Grier are making plans for retirement. They sold the Naiad backlist to Bella Books in 2003. Many Naiad Press authors transferred their contracts to Bella Books.

Bibliophiles Grier and McBride have left an important heritage to the scholarly community by donating their collection of lesbiana to the James C. Hormel Gay and Lesbian Center of the San Francisco Public Library. The collection, valued at $400,000 at the time of its donation in 1995, comprises more than fifteen thousand books, monographs, and manuscripts. It also includes photographs and items of memorabilia.

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