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Meet the Jury

Mike Benny


Mike Benny is an illustrator working in Austin, Texas. A graduate of Chico State University with a Graphic Design degree, he worked for three years as a designer before moving to illustrating full-time. His work has appeared in Playboy, Time, Sports Illustrated, GQ, New Yorker and Texas Monthly magazines. Among his clients are: Arena Stage, Major League Baseball and the NFL. He has received two Gold and two Silver medals from the Society of Illustrators and his work has also been in American Illustration and Society of Publication design Annuals. Focusing more on children’s books, Benny has just completed his second book, Oh Brother, written by Nikki Grimes for Greenwillow Books. Benny is also working on a long-term project of illustrating Hall of Fame Ballplayers from the first half of the 1900s with plans to turn it into a book.

Irene Gallo

art director
Tor/Forge/Starscape Books

Irene Gallo graduated from The Cooper Union in 1992. In 1994 she became the art director at Tor/Forge/Starscape Books. Gallo is an advocate of original illustration. She serves on the executive board of directors at the Society of Illustrators and the advisory board of Spectrum: The Best in Fantastic Art. Gallo was instrumental in putting together the Spectrum Exhibition at the Museum of American Illustration at the Society of Illustrators in 2004. Tor book covers have won medals from Spectrum, the Society of Illustrators in New York, the Society of Illustrators Los Angeles, the Association of Fantasy and Science Fiction Artists, and have been shown in Communication Arts and Graphis. Gallo is a four-time recipient of the Chesley Award for best art director.

Hollis A. King

vice president and creative director
Verve Music Group

Hollis A. King is vice president and creative director at the Verve Music Group, the largest jazz record label in the world. He is responsible for art direction of all CD packaging, logos, advertising, point-of-purchase and signage. King moved from his native Trinidad and Tobago to New York where he studied advertising and design at New York City Community College. He later transferred to the School of Visual Arts where he studied with Milton Glaser, his greatest influence and inspiration. King worked at several design studios before entering the music industry in 1994 as a graphic designer at GRP records, becoming creative director in 1997. Two years later, he joined the Verve Music Group in the position he holds now. King has received numerous achievement awards and citations from Communication Arts, How, Print, AIGA and the Society of Illustrators, as well as Grammy nominations in 1995, 1999, 2000 and 2005.

Joe Kimberling

art director
Los Angeles magazine

Joe Kimberling is currently the art director at Los Angeles magazine. Prior to that, he worked as an editorial design consultant at Roger Black, Inc. He was also the managing art director of Entertainment Weekly, where he worked from 1991 to 2000. Joe received his master’s degree in marketing communications from Northwestern University in 1990 and received his bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Kansas in 1998. He has received numerous design awards from the Society of Publication Designers (SPD), the Type Director’s Club, Print and the City and Regional Magazine Association (CRMA), who named him “Designer of the Year” in 2003 and 2004. Kimberling grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, and he’s the proud parent of a four-year-old pointer named Boo.

Judi Oyama

art director

Judi Oyama has been the art director at Giro for the past six years, working on all bike and snow printed materials which include catalogs, packaging, point-of-purchase and tradeshow graphics. Oyama loves working on all the Lance Armstrong Lone Star Series projects and continues to work on his LiveStrong/Giro collaborations. Oyama graduated from San Jose State University with a BS in Graphic Design, with an Illustration concentration. She founded her small design company Maximum Impact Design in 1987, a unique action-sports graphics powerhouse that has designed graphics for surf, snow and skateboard brands world-wide for over twenty years and still works on select projects depending upon fun factor and time frame. She is a professional slalom skateboard racer, has been skateboarding for over 33 years and is currently ranked fourth in the world.