GREENVILLE, Wis., Aug. 22, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- School Specialty (Nasdaq:SCHS), a leading K-12 education company with the broadest array of products in the market, today announced the appointment of Patrick "Pat" T. Collins in the newly created position of Senior Vice President, Sales, effective September 4. In this new role, Collins will have the responsibility for leading School Specialty's sales organization and targeted strategic initiatives.

Collins was most recently Senior Vice President, Sales of United Stationers, one of the largest broadline distributors of business supplies in the U.S.  He joined United Stationers in 2004, and was responsible for sales, field marketing, customer service and business development, as well as the leadership of two divisions, which together, accounted for approximately $600 million in revenues.

"Pat Collins' proven leadership and effectiveness in designing and implementing new sales and sales management processes will be a great asset to School Specialty," said President and Chief Executive Officer Michael P. Lavelle. "His experience in creating new business development teams, growing specific vertical consumer opportunities and developing effective channel strategies will enhance our senior management team while creating a strong sales organization capable of driving long term sales growth and improving customer satisfaction."

Collins was also previously associated with Ingram Micro, Inc. from 2000 to 2004, as Senior Group Vice President, Sales and Marketing. Prior to Ingram Micro, Collins spent 15 years with Frito-Lay, in various positions of increasing responsibility, including operations, sales, finance and accounting. Collins graduated from Marietta College with a BA in Economics and received his MBA from The Ohio State University, Columbus.

About School Specialty, Inc.

School Specialty is a leading education company that provides innovative and proprietary products, programs and services to help educators engage and inspire students of all ages and abilities to learn. The company designs, develops, and provides preK-12 educators with the latest and very best curriculum, supplemental learning resources, and school supplies. Working in collaboration with educators, School Specialty reaches beyond the scope of textbooks to help teachers, guidance counselors and school administrators ensure that every student reaches his or her full potential. 

Accelerated Learning's major products include: Wordly Wise 3000 ®, Premier Agenda, Delta Education , FOSS ®, CPO Science , Frey Scientific ®, Educator's Publishing Service, Academy of Reading ®, Think Math! , MCI ®, S.P.I.R.E. ® and SPARK .   Educational Resources proprietary brands include: Education Essentials ®, Sportime ®, Childcraft ®, Sax ® Arts & Crafts, Califone ®, abc ®, Abilitations ®, School Smart ®, Classroom Select and Projects by Design ®.

For more information about School Specialty, visit

Cautionary Statement Concerning Forward-Looking Information

Any statements made in this press release about future results of operations, expectations, plans, prospects, including but not limited to statements included under the heading "Financial Outlook," constitute forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements also include those preceded or followed by the words "anticipates," "believes," "could," "estimates," "expects," "intends," "may," "should," "plans," "targets" and/or similar expressions. These forward-looking statements are based on School Specialty's current estimates and assumptions and, as such, involve uncertainty and risk. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance, and actual results may differ materially from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements because of a number of factors, including the factors described in Item 1A of School Specialty's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended April 28, 2012, which factors are incorporated herein by reference. Except to the extent required under the federal securities laws, School Specialty does not intend to update or revise the forward-looking statements.
CONTACT: Elizabeth M. Higashi, CFA         Investor Relations         920-243-5392

School Specialty, Inc.