On Monday, May 4, the Pulitzer Prize Board announced this year’s winners and finalists across all categories. Barry Blitt, contributor to The New Yorker, received the award for editorial cartooning. The three finalists in this category — Lalo Alcaraz, Matt Bors and Kevin Kallaugher (KAL) — share something in common in that they are all syndicated by Andrews McMeel.
“I’m incredibly proud of the work our editorial cartoonists do, and the fact that all of the finalists were part of Andrews McMeel Syndication speaks to the quality of talent that we work with every day,” said Shena Wolf, director, comics & acquisitions, at Andrews McMeel Syndication.
Bors and KAL have both previously been named Pulitzer finalists (in 2012 and 2015, respectively); this is Alcaraz’s first time as a finalist. All three have powerful perspectives and portfolios. Alcaraz puts a poignant viewpoint on local and national issues as they relate to the Latinx community; Bors, who founded The Nib, creates cutting cartoons of the Trump administration as well as moderate Democrats; and KAL keenly confronts local Baltimore politics, international affairs and Trump.
Below are the biographies of these three well-deserving Pulitzer finalists.
Lalo Alcaraz is an award-winning visual/media artist and television/film writer based in Los Angeles who has been chronicling the ascendancy of Latinos in the US for a quarter-century. This Chicano artist is the creator of the syndicated daily comic strip “La Cucaracha,” as seen in the L.A. Times and other papers nationwide. A prolific political cartoonist, Lalo is winner of six Southern California Press Awards for Best Editorial Cartoon and was an editorial cartoonist for The LA Weekly from 1992-2010. He now creates editorial cartoons in English and Spanish for Andrews McMeel Syndication, Daily Kos and various newspapers, including Philadelphia’s Al Dia News. He was Cultural Consultant on the Oscar-winning Day of the Dead-themed animated global hit Pixar movie “COCO.” Alcaraz is also Cultural Consultant, Consulting Producer and Writer on the animated series “Los Casagrandes” for Nickelodeon Animation. Lalo is a former illustration faculty member of Otis College of Fine Art & Design in Los Angeles. He is a graduate of San Diego State University (BA in Art) and UC Berkeley (Master’s in Architecture).
Lalo was born in San Diego, California to Mexican immigrant parents from Sinaloa and Zacatecas. He is married to a public-school teacher and they have three somewhat obedient children.
Matt Bors is an editor and cartoonist based in Portland, Oregon. His work has appeared in The Nation, The Guardian, The Village Voice, and dozens of other print and web publications, many now defunct due to the vagaries or the market. He was a 2012 Pulitzer Prize Finalist and Herblock Prize winner for his political cartoons, which were collected in the book “Life Begins at Incorporation.” He also drew the graphic novel “War Is Boring” with author David Axe. In 2013 he founded The Nib, a publication for political and non-fiction cartooning that has expanded into an award-winning print magazine.
Kevin Kallaugher (KAL)
Kevin Kallaugher (KAL) is the editorial cartoonist for The Economist magazine of London, The Baltimore Sun and the online newsletter Counterpoint.
After graduating from Harvard College with honors in 1977, KAL embarked on a bicycle tour of the British Isles, where he joined the Brighton Basketball Club as a player and coach. After the club hit financial difficulties, KAL drew caricatures of tourists in Trafalgar Square and on Brighton Pier. In March 1978, The Economist recruited him to become their first resident cartoonist in their 145-year history. KAL spent the next 10 years working in London as a cartoonist for such publications as The Observer, The Sunday Telegraph, Today and The Mail on Sunday.
KAL returned to the U.S. in 1988 to join The Baltimore Sun as its editorial cartoonist. KAL left The Sun in 2006 but later rejoined the paper after a six-year hiatus in 2012. Between The Baltimore Sun and The Economist, KAL has published over 8,000 cartoons. KAL has also painted more than 150 magazine covers for The Economist and other publications.
KAL’s work for The Sun and The Economist has appeared in more than 100 publications worldwide, including Le Monde, Der Spiegel, Pravda, Krokodil, Daily Yomiuri, The Australian, The International Herald Tribune, The New York Times, Time, Newsweek, U.S. News and World Report and The Washington Post. His cartoons are syndicated by Andrews McMeel Syndication.
KAL has won many awards for his work including the 2018 and 2002 Berryman award presented by the National Press Foundation, the 2015 Herblock Prize, prize finalist for the 2015 Pulitzer in Editorial Cartooning, 2019 Rex Babin Award for Excellence in US local cartooning, 2014 Grand Prix for Cartoon of the Year in Europe as presented by Press Cartoon Europe, The 1999, 2002, 2005 and 2014 Thomas Nast Award presented by the Overseas Press Club of America, 2005 Nast Prize as presented by the town of Landau, Germany, the 2004 “Gillray Goblet” for cartoon of the year as presented by the Political Cartoon Society of Great Britain, the 1996 Grafica Internazionale Award at the International Festival of Satire in Pisa, Italy, the 1990 award for Best Editorial Cartoon at the Witty World International Cartoon Festival in Budapest, Hungary, and the 1982 Feature Cartoonist of the Year Award as presented by the Cartoonist Club of Great Britain.