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Baltimore Sun cartoonist Kevin 'KAL' Kallaugher wins National Press Foundation's Berryman Award

Kevin “KAL” Kallaugher, cartoonist for The Baltimore Sun and The Economist, has won the National Press Foundation’s 2017 Clifford K. and James T. Berryman Award for Editorial Cartoons, making him the first cartoonist to win the award twice, the foundation announced on their website Wednesday.

“It’s always great to be rewarded in this regard,” said Kallaugher.

Kallaugher, who has illustrated thousands of cartoons for The Sun over nearly three decades (during his first stint at the paper from 1988 to 2006 and again since his return in 2012), first won the Berryman Award in 2002.

“I feel like I’m awarded every day” by making a living being a professional cartoonist, he said Wednesday. “I try to do work to the highest standard and if someone recognizes that and wants to give out an award, I’m happy to receive it.”

The Berryman Award, which was funded by former Washington Star art critic Florence Berryman in 1989 in memory of her father and brother, who were both Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonists, will be presented to KAL with a $2,500 prize at the press foundation’s annual awards dinner in February.

National Press Foundation judges said Kallaugher’s submitted portfolio of cartoons, most which criticized President Donald Trump, “captures the complexity of our age in his arresting cartoons. His work is layered, both visually and emotionally. KAL’s striking artwork jumps off the page with nuanced body language, vivid details and intense expressions.”

Kallaugher was also named a Pulitzer Prize finalist for editorial cartooning in 2015 and received the Herblock Prize the same year.

Out of the five political cartoons for which he was awarded this year, Kallaugher said his favorite was the one that features President Donald Trump talking with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The cartoon depicts Putin telling Trump about his plans to hack the election, with Trump responding, “You had me at ‘hello.’”

“This year Donald Trump has kind of consumed everybody and my cartoons kind of present that,” Kallaugher said.

“It wasn’t just a caricature. It wasn’t just the words that they’re saying. It’s their body language, because all of us can read body language. When you’re doing a cartoon, you have to be aware of everything … you want to use all the tools possible to deliver your message, and body language is a good one.”

As for the prize money, he notes it will come around tax time. “If Trump and those guys cut taxes,” he said, “maybe I won’t need to use it.”

bbritto@baltsun.com

twitter.com/brittanybritto

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