Birthdays for Friday, Oct. 9

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to seven excellent visual journalists…


Mike Beckom is a freelance editorial cartoonist based in Greenwood, S.C. A 2010 graduate of Piedmont Tec, Mike worked in a food production plant before becoming a quality assurance technician for FujiFilm Graphic Systems. He earned a degree earlier this year from the Savannah College of Art and Design. He freelances cartoons to the Greenwood Index-Journal and to four or five weeklies around the state. Find his Facebook fan page here. Mike turns 48 today.


Zack McDermott is a sales rep with Paycom. A 2012 graduate of Gannon University in Erie, Pa., Zack spent a year-and-a-half as a copy editor for the Erie Times-News and then six months as a reporter for the Oswego, N.Y., Palladium-Times. Find his Twitter feed here. Zack turns 26 today.


Christine McNeal is pastor for member care and connections at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Bloomington, Ill. A graduate of the Art Institute of Chicago and the University of Missouri, Christine was assistant managing editor of the Peoria (Ill.) Journal Star before becoming deputy managing editor of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in 1997 and serving as president of the Society for News Design in 2006. She left Milwaukee after ten years to start a new career in the clergy. Christine graduated in 2011 from Chicago’s Lutheran School of Theology, and interned at Milwaukee’s Capitol Drive Lutheran Church. After a year of residency there, Christine became the hospice chaplain for Advocate BroMenn Medical Center in Bloomington, Ill. She moved to St. John’s in 2012.


Chris Olds is an editor, writer, blogger and designer based in Dallas, Texas. A graduate of the University of Alabama, Chris spent five years as a designer, copy editor and columnist for the Tuscaloosa (Ala.) News before moving to the San Antonio Express-News in 2004 to become a designer and “page-two” columnist. He spent three years as a designer, copy editor and sports memorabilia blogger for the Orlando Sentinel before moving to Dallas in 2008 to work for Beckett Media, publishers of popular sports collecting magazines. Chris edited the company’s flagship baseball monthly, Beckett Baseball, and also Beckett Sports Card Monthly and Beckett Basketball magazines. Chris was laid off last month. Find his design portfolio here, his Nick Swisher collecting blog here and his Twitter feed here.


Morgan Phillips is a design researcher for for Lextant, a design and user experience firm in Columbus, Ohio. A 2005 graduate of Kent State University, Morgan spent three-and-a-half years as a news designer for the Detroit Free Press. While working on a master’s degree at the College for Creative Studies in Detroit, she interned with Chrysler and BASF. She earned her degree in 2011, worked briefly with Cross Country Automotive Services in Boston, Mass., and went to work for Lextant in 2011. Find her web site here. Morgan turns 33 today.


Laura Ruel is an assistant professor of visual communication and multimedia at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Many of you know her, however, as the founder and then director of the Best of Multimedia Design awards for the Society for News Design, known for several years a the SND.ies. A 1985 graduate of Colgate University, Laura obtained a master’s degree from the University of Missouri and worked as a reporter, editor, designer and manager at the Ft. Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel, the Omaha World-Herald and the Rocky Mountain News of Denver. She taught journalism at Creighton University and the University of Maine before moving to North Carolina in 2004. Find her web site here and her Twitter feed here.


Poh Si Teng is a video journalist for the New York Times. A 2007 honors graduate of San Francisco State University, Poh Si interned with the New Straits Times of Malaysia, the Oakland Tribune, the Columbus Dispatch, the Virginian-Pilot and the Miami Herald. As a freelancer based in New Delhi, she worked with a number of clients including the Times, CBS, the Wall Street Journal, Agence France-Presse, the Associated Press and UNICEF. She joined the Times full-time in 2012. Find her web site here and her Twitter feed here. Poh Si turns 31 today.


Tracey Trumbull is manager of digital content for WRCB-TV in Chattanooga, Tenn. A 1981 graduate of the Southeast Center for Photographic Studies, Tracey spent six years as director of photography at the Boca Raton News. He became deputy director of the KRT photo service in 1990 and then moved again to the Sun Sentinel of Fort Lauderdale in 1994 as assistant director of photography. Two years later, the Sun Sentinel made him a multimedia producer and then put him in charge of its Mac publishing systems in 2000. He moved to the Knoxville (Tenn.) News Sentinel in 2005 as director of photography and then moved to the Times Free Press of Chattanooga in 2009 to become visuals editor. He slid over to the world of television in 2012. Find Tracy’s personal web site here and his Twitter feed here.

Zack, Poh Si, Morgan, Chris, Tracey Laura and Christine share a birthday with actors Scott Stewart Bakula, Anthony Marcos “Tony” Shalhoub, Brandon James Routh, Erin Cohen (better known as Erin Daniels), Zachery Ty Bryan, Brian Blessed, and Steven Michael Burns (the original host of Blue’s Clues); musicians John Winston Lennon, Clyde Jackson Browne, Scott “Scotty” McCreery and John Alec Entwistle (of the Who); musical relatives Sharon Rachel Levy Osbourne (wife of Ozzy) and Sean Ono Lennon (son of John); director Guillermo del Toro; TV host Gok Wan; sports greats Annika Sörenstam (golf), Lauren Davis (tennis), Kenneth “Kenny” Anderson (basketball), Michael “Mike” Singletary (football), Joseph “Joe” Anthony Pepitone, Brian Jay Downing (both baseball) and Walter Francis O’Malley (baseball owner); C-SPAN founder Brian Patrick Lamb, U.K. prime minister David William Cameron; politicians Chester Trent Lott Sr. and Everett Howard Hunt Jr.; cartoonist Michael Bartley “Mike” Peters and historian Charles Bruce Catton.

In addition, today is National Chess Day, National Pro-Life Cupcake Day, World Egg Day, World Post Day and Leif Erikson Day. Seriously.

Best wishes, all! Have a wonderful birthday today!

Birthdays for Thursday, Oct. 8

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to five top-notch visual journalists…


Scott Burgess is Detroit editor for Motor Trend magazine. A 1993 graduate of UCLA, Scott worked for Chrysler and then served as Middle East bureau chief and European editor for Stars and Stripes. He moved to the Detroit News as an auto critic in 2005. After a high-profile dust-up with his editors in 2011 — during which he quit after his editors changed one of his reviews in order to please an advertiser but returned to his job a few days later — he left the News for good in 2012. He spent a year as senior editor for AOL Autos in Birmingham, Mich., and then went to work for Motor Trend in 2013. Find his Twitter feed here. Scott turns 48 today.


Anne Geggis is city reporter for the Sun-Sentinel of Fort Lauderdale, Fla. A 1989 graduate of Saint Michael’s College in Colchester, Vt., Anne spent 10-and-a-half years with the Burlington, Vt., Free Press. She moved to the Daytona Beach News-Journal in 1999 and then slid over to the Gainesville Sun in 2011. She joined the Sun Sentinel in 2012. In addition, Anne is president of the Florida Press Club. Find her Twitter feed here.


Kathleen Grones is an editorial assistant at the Victoria (Texas) Advocate. A 1986 graduate of Texas A&M, she spent several years working at the Faith Academy in Victoria before joining the Advocate. Find her Twitter feed here.


Nancy Reese retired three years ago as training and technology editor for the editing and presentation department of the Chicago Tribune. A 1978 graduate of the University of Illinois at Chicago, Nancy spent five years as a copy editor at the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Ill., before moving to the Tribune in 1980. She now does consulting and research work.


Luke Trautwein is art director for the Brewers Association in Boulder, Colo., designing New Brewer magazine. Previously, he was a designer for for the Charlotte Observer. Find his portfolio here.

Luke, Anne, Kathleen, Scott and Nancy share a birthday with actors Matthew Paige “Matt” Damon, Susan Alexandra “Sigourney” Weaver, Cornelius Crane “Chevy” Chase, Darrell Hammond, Stephanie Zimbalist, Emily Mallory Procter, Paul Hogan, John Feggo Jr. (better known as Kirk Alyn); Nicholas Scott “Nick” Cannon and Angus Turner Jones (the “half” from Two and a Half Men); musicians John William “Johnny” Ramone (of the Ramones), Robert Earl “Kool” Bell (of Kool and the Gang) and Peter Gene Hernandez (better known as Bruno Mars); sports greats Matthew Nicholas Biondi (swimming), Frederick Sydney “Fred” Stolle (tennis), William Clyde “Bill” Elliott (auto racing) and Travis Alan Pastrana (motorcycle racing); writers Franklin Patrick Herbert Jr. and Robert Lawrence “R.L.” Stine; comic book creator Harvey Lawrence Pekar; aviator Edward Vernon Rickenbacker; Argentinian leader Juan Domingo Perón; civil rights leader Jesse Louis Jackson Jr.; politician Dennis John Kucinich; Netflix co-founder Wilmot Reed Hastings Jr. and gossip columnist Rona Barrett.

In addition, today is National Depression Screening Day, World Octopus Day, World Sight Day and Alvin C. York Day. Seriously.

Have a wonderful birthday, everybody! Best wishes!

Birthdays for Wednesday, Oct. 7

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to five remarkable visual journalists…

Susan Barber is art director of the Houston Chronicle. Where, yes, she supervises yours truly.


Kike Calvo is a New York City-based photojournalist, who often shoots for National Geographic and the New York Times. A 1972 graduate of the University of Zaragoza in Spain — where he studied economics — Kike moved to the University of Idaho to earn a second degree in journalism. He’s shot in 65 nations for clients like el Mundo, the San Francisco Chronicle, Newsday, USA Today, the Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, the Associated Press and Rolling Stone. He also teaches seminars all over the world. Find his web site here, his Facebook fan page here and his Twitter feed here.


Hannah Glennon is a technical writer for the Breakaway Group of Greenwood Village, Colo. She also does brand consulting via her company, All By You. A 2014 graduate of Colorado State University, Hannah was digital media manager for the student paper there, the Rocky Mountain Collegian. She was the project manager for the 2012 redesign of the paper’s web operation in 2013 and interned for Feasting Fort Collins and F+W Media of Loveland, Colo. She was also president of the school’s Online News Association chapter. Find her web site here and her Twitter feed here. Hannah turns 24 today.


Nathaniel Pearlman is founder and president of Graphicacy, a graphics consultancy in Washington, D.C., and Timeplots, an infographics startup also based in Washington. A 1988 graduate of Yale University, Nathaniel worked as a programmer before working on a Ph.D. in Political Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1996. He created NGP Software — now known as NGP VAN — in 1997, a maker of organizational, fundraising and new media products for political campaigns and political action committees. He served as chief technology officer for the Hillary Clinton campaign in 2007 and 2008. and then created Timeplots in 2009. Find Timeplots’ Twitter feed here and Nathaniel’s personal Twitter feed here.


Denise Smaldino is a designer for the Orange County Register and creative director for OC Family magazine. A 2001 graduate of Cal State Fullerton, Denise served as editor of the student paper there, the Daily Titan. She spent three years as news editor and designer for the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin of Ontario, Calif., and then two years as a news and features designer for the Riverside Press Enterprise before moving to Variety in 2006. In 2012, she moved to the OC Register. She took on additional magazine duties last winter. Find Denise’s web site here.

Hannah, Kike, Denise, Susan and Nathaniel share a birthday with actors Rachel Anne McAdams, Jamie Hector and Rachel Marie Oberlin (better known as Bree Olson); musicians Taylor Reuben Hicks, Toni Michelle Braxton, John Mellencamp, Thomas Edward “Thom” Yorke (of Radiohead) and Yo-Yo Ma; the X Factor‘s Simon Philip Cowell; sports greats Priest Anthony Holmes, Charles Woodson (both football), José Rosario Domec Cardenal and Evan Michael Longoria (both baseball) and Lowell “Cotton” Fitzsimmons (basketball coach); war criminal Heinrich Luitpold Himmler, Russian leader Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin; former Marine Corps officer Oliver Laurence North, vice-president Henry Agard Wallace, Nobel Peace Prize winner Desmond Mpilo Tutu; physicist Niels Henrik David Bohr, columnist Daniel Keenan “Dan” Savage and TV commentators Vivian “Clive” James and Josephina Victoria “Joy” Behar.

In addition, today is Balloons Around the World Day, National Kite Day, Pet Obesity Awareness Day, Walk to School Day, Emergency Nurses Day and You Matter to Me Day. Seriously.

Best wishes, folks! Have a wonderful birthday today!

Birthdays for Tuesday, Oct. 6

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to five awesome visual journalists…


James Bennett is a visual communication analyst in the Government Accountability Office in Washington, D.C. A 1994 graduate of the University of Missouri, James spent a year as a reporter with the Columbia (Mo.) Daily Tribune, a year as a graphic artist for the Asbury Park Press and then two years at the Orange County Register before returning to Mizzou to teach infographics and to obtain a masters degree in media management. James then spent four years as assistant graphics editor of the Boston Globe before becoming assistant managing editor of the Bakersfield Californian in 2006. He left newspapers for D.C. in 2009. Find his Twitter feed here.


Daryl Moen retired this year after 41 years as a professor of journalism at the University of Missouri in Columbia, Mo. A 1966 graduate of the University of Wisconsin at Eau Claire, Daryl obtained a master’s degree from the University of Minnesota in 1967 and became editor of the Portage (Wis.) Daily Register and then managing editor of the DeKalb (Ill.) Daily Chronicle. He joined Mizzou in 1974, serving for nine years as managing editor of the Missourian and authoring or co-authoring seven books on reporting, news design and convergence. Daryl might be retired but he’s not gone for good: He’s teaching one class this semester and next as well as working on the next edition of one of his textbooks. Find Daryl’s web site here and his Twitter feed here.

1410.Teresa Rodriguez

Teresa Rodriguez is a designer for the Cape Gazette of Milford, Del. She’s a 1998 graduate of Philadelphia’s University of the Arts. Find her web site here and her Twitter feed here.


Mark Wood is an assistant editor for Helios Global Inc., a contractor that publishes magazines for the Dept. of Defense. A 1988 summa cum laude graduate of Winthrop College in Rock Hill, S.C., Mark spent nearly eight years as a reporter for the Herald-Journal of Spartanburg, S.C., before joining the Ledger of Lakeland, Fla., in 1996. He moved to St. Pete in 1997, serving for 14-and-a-half years as a senior copy editor for the St. Petersburg Times. His wife, Lisa Buie, is also a longtime Times editor and reporter. Mark departed newspapers in 2012.


Ken Wright is an artist — a painter — working out of d’ART Center at Selden Arcade in Norfolk, Va. A 1968 graduate of Norfolk State University, Ken started out that year as an intern in the public relations department of the Virginian-Pilot, moving into the advertising creative services and then to the photo department of the afternoon Ledger-Star as a retouch and airbrush artist in 1970. In 1976, Ken became an illustrator and page designer for the Pilot’s features department. He moved to graphics in 1983 and worked there until his retirement in 2007. Ken turns 72 today.

Teresa, Mark, James, Daryl and Ken share a birthday with actors Ioan Gruffudd, Elizabeth Judson Shue, Jeremy Merton Sisto, Britt-Marie Ekland and Jane Alice Peters (better known as Carole Lombard); musicians Kevin Cronin (of REO Speedwagon) and Sidney Matthew Sweet; sports greats Walter Ray Williams Jr. (bowling), Daniel “Daniel” Brière (hockey), Rebecca Rose Lobo (basketball), Richard Vershaun Seymour (football) and Anthony Kevin “Tony” Dungy (football coach); architect Charles-Édouard Jeanneret-Gris (better known as Le Corbusier); CBS president Leslie Moonves; inventor George Westinghouse Jr. and journalist Shana Ager Alexander.

In addition, today is American Libraries Day, National German-American Day, Mad Hatter Day and Ecological Debt Day. Seriously.

Best wishes, all! Have a wonderful birthday today!

Birthdays for Monday, Oct. 5

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to five wonderful visual journalists…


Keith Allen is a self-employed visual manager based in Cape Town, South Africa. He got his start in newspapers as a reporter and photographer in 1978 — writing about motorcycles — and has worked on a number of tabloid startups, including the Namibian Sun, the Cape Son and Son op Sondag, also in Cape Town. He spent six-and-a-half years as production editor for the Son tabloids in Cape Town before moving into a position in 2012 as an in-house design consultant for Media24 papers in Johannesburg. He left that position earlier in 2014. Keith turns 60 today.


Joan Andrews is vice president of the design team at Lee Hecht Harrison, a career development consultancy in Orlando, Fla. A 1982 graduate of Radford University in Virginia, Joan spent four years as a reporter for the News & Advance of Lynchburg, Va., and then three years as an editor and designer for the Commercial Appeal of Memphis, Tenn., before moving to the Orlando Sentinel in 1989. She stayed there for 20 years, eventually rising to senior editor and assistant sports editor. She left the Sentinel in 2009 and started work at Lee Hecht in 2010.


Dwijith Payyanur is an illustrator for the daily newspaper in Kerala, India. Find his blog here and his Twitter feed here.


Matt Perry is senior information designer for the Harvard Business Review in Boston. A 2001 graduate of Ball State University, Matt worked for the student paper there, the Ball State Daily News, served an internship for the Portland Oregonian and freelanced for the Times-Union of Warsaw, Ind., the Star Press of Muncie and the Associated Press. He spent three years as an artist for the New Orleans Times-Picayune before moving to the San Diego Union-Tribune in 2004 as a news artist. He was promoted to senior news artist in 2006, to graphics editor in 2008 and to graphics director in 2010. Matt left U-T San Diego in 2014 and moved to the East Coast in December. Find his portfolio here and his Twitter feed here.


Lauren Roth is senior manager of facilities communications for Orange County Public Schools in Orlando, Fla. A 2000 graduate of Northwestern University, Lauren spent three months in Ireland writing for a news magazine. She worked as a local government reporter for the Telegraph of Nashua, N.H., for the Times Leader of Wilkes-Barre, Pa. and as an education reporter for the Times-Tribune of Scranton, Pa. She spent five years starting in 2005 as an education reporter for the Virginian-Pilot of Norfolk. She moved to the same position at the Orlando Sentinel in 2012 and left newspapers this past May. Find Lauren’s Twitter feed here.

Swijith, Lauren, Matt, Joan and Keith share a birthday with Jesse Adam Eisenberg, Kate Elizabeth Winslet, Parminder Kaur Nagra, Karen Jane Allen, Donald Henry Pleasence, Guy Edward Pearce, Bernard Jeffrey McCullough (better known as Bernie Mac), Jeffrey Charles William Michael “Jeff” Conaway, William Szathmary (better known as Bill Dana) and Louis Feinberg (better known as Larry Fine of the Three Stooges); musicians Robert Frederick Zenon “Bob” Geldorf, Steven H. “Steve” Miller, Brian Johnson (of AC/DC) and James Burgon Valentine (of Maroon 5); game show host Allen Packard Ellsworth (better known as Allen Ludden); hotel heiress Nicholai Olivia “Nicky” Hilton; condiment heiress Maria Teresa Thierstein Simões-Ferreira Heinz; sports greats Grant Henry Hill (basketball), Patrick Jacques Roy and Mario Lemieux (hockey), Trent Cole Jr., (football), Barry Switzer (football coach), Michael Mario Andretti (auto racing) and George William “Bill” James (sportswriter and inventor of “sabermetrics”); sculptor Maya Ying Lin; neighborhood watch volunteer George Michael Zimmerman; cartoonist William Aloysius “Bil” Keane; astronaut Richard Francis Gordon Jr.; physicist Robert Hutchings Goddard; author Clive Barker; president Chester Alan Arthur and McDonald’s founder Raymond Albert Kroc.

In addition, today is the World Day of Architecture, the World Day of Bullying Prevention, World Habitat Day, World Teachers’ Day, the International Day of No Destitution, Child Health Day, the Day of Unity and Techie’s Day. Seriously.

Have a great birthday today, all! Best wishes!