Image Comics has announced the hiring of Dirk Wood and Alex Cox, both joining the publisher off of stints at IDW Publishing. The hirings come as part of a larger re-organization of Image's sales department.
"Over the years I've been at Image, I've had the opportunity to work with a wide variety of talented people, but it's always nice to welcome someone with the kind of experience and enthusiasm Alex and Dirk are bringing to the job," Image Comics' publisher/chief creative officer Eric Stephenson says in the announcement. "We have a lot of exciting things in store for 2021 and beyond, so adding this level of expertise to the team Jeff Boison has built with Chloe Ramos-Peterson and Emilio Bautista is going to help put those plans in overdrive."
Wood has been the face of IDW's public relations department for much of the past decade. First joining IDW in 2010 after a stint at Dark Horse, Wood moved up from retail marketing director to being vice president of marketing over the past decade, and a few years ago expanded his role to be the creative director of a Portland-based offshoot of IDW called PDX.
"I've been an Image fan since the early '90s and a fan of the way they do things since I got into this business," says Wood. "Joining a company with this kind of history, that constantly has an eye to the future, that's clearly run by true comics fans... I just can't wait to join the team and get started."
Wood plans to begin working at Image this September as its director of international sales & licensing, which entails negotiating foreign licensing agreements and representing the company at non-North American shows such as Angoulême and the London Book Fair.
Alex Cox is joining the creator-owned bastion as director of direct market & specialty sales, after working the past 12 months as IDW's event programming & special projects director. From 2010 to 2019 he was the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund's deputy director, and previous to that he was a comic book store retailer with St. Mark's Comics and Rocketship Comics.
"Comics retail has been in my blood since I was a teenager," Cox says in the announcement. "There's nothing better than connecting an eager reader with a great book. Helping shops make that happen with Image's amazing slate of comics is a great privilege, and I'm wildly excited to have this opportunity."
With this role at Image, Cox will be the primary liaison regarding sales with Direct Market (DM) comic book stores and Image's exclusive DM distributor, Diamond. He will also coordinate variant covers and manage convention sales.
At the time time, current Image employees Emilio Bautista and Chloe Ramos-Peterson have been promoted to the positions of digital sales coordinator and book market & library sales manager, respectively.
Image Comics' sales department will be led by Jeff Boison, who himself is promoted from book trade sales to the new title of director of sales & publishing planning. He will report directly to Stephenson.
"I couldn't be more excited about the team we've put together to ensure the highest levels of success across all formats and territories for the creators we work with at Image," says Boison. "While other publishers may promote themselves as good partners or questionably tout themselves as creator-owned—as I've learned first-hand over the last five years—there is truly no publisher in the industry who champions the best interests of the retailers, creators, and the entire comic book industry alike as Image Comics does."