Friday, May 3, 2024

Alexandra Bowman awarded first John Locher Memorial Fellowship

From The Daily Cartoonist.

The John Locher Memorial Award has evolved into the John Locher Memorial Fellowship and the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists has announced that Alexandra Bowman is the first beneficiary of the new honor.

Bowman is a political cartoonist, journalist, and satirist based in Washington, DC. 

She served as the editorial cartoonist for the political action committee The Lincoln Project during the 2020 election, and later drew for the John Kerry and John Kasich-founded environmental organization World War Zero. 

Her cartoons been published by BBC News, the National Wildlife Federation, and Penguin Random House UK. She also works as a costume designer and arts and culture writer.

Alexandra Bowman will be at the CXC Festival in Columbus, Ohio, September 26-29. 

For 35 years, the AAEC’s John Locher Memorial Award spotlighted college-age and early-career cartoonists across North America. 

Named after the late son of Dick and Mary Locher, the AAEC created the award to help discover young cartoonists and encourage interest in editorial cartooning among students — and it worked.

Over a dozen winners of the annual contest went on to staff jobs at daily newspapers, and three eventually won the Pulitzer Prize. 

As the landscape for political cartooning shifted, the award expanded in 2015 to recognize a variety of new approaches to the form, from animated political cartoons to graphic journalism, and comics essays on history and current events.

In recent years, the Locher team continued to look for ways to best support budding cartoonists, including options other than a contest format. 

After a gap year, and discussions among the Locher Advisory Committee and the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library and Museum, the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists is happy to announce the first John Locher Memorial Fellowship.

Kevin Necessary, the new Locher Fellowship manger, said, 
“The Fellowship shares much of the same framework as the Award — an all-expenses-paid trip to a cartoonist convention, a cash prize, and the support and mentoring from fellow cartoonists — but removes the contest element and changes the destination to the annual Cartoon Crossroads Columbus Festival [rather than the AAEC Convention].”
The Locher Fellow will be a guest of the CXC Festival, held every fall in September or October, and will receive a one-year Regular membership in the AAEC. 

They will also have the opportunity to meet with AAEC cartoonists during the year of the Fellowship for portfolio reviews and career advice.

JP Trostle, the Minister of Information for the AAEC, noted, 
“Much of the language of the structure of the new Fellowship came from Paul Tarr, a current AAEC Director and the second winner of the Locher Award back in 1988, which gave the process a feeling of coming full circle.”
Complete details about the new Fellowship can be found at

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