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After Dinner Speaker | Current Events | Humor | Political Humor | Entertainment
For twenty years, Steve Kelley served as political cartoonist for The San Diego Union and its later incarnation, The San Diego Union-Tribune. His work was syndicated nationwide, overseas, and enjoyed wide publication in newspapers and magazines including The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Today, Time, Newsweek, and U.S. News & World Report. Since leaving The San Diego Union-Tribune Steve Kelley joined The Times-Picayne in New Orleans as their editorial cartoonist.
"Syndication is a Godsend," Steve Kelley observes. "Without it, I'd have no way to infuriate people in Wahpeton, North Dakota." Steve Kelley's political cartoons have won first place awards six times in the California Newspaper Publishers Association journalism contest. In 1998, he was one of three finalists for the Pulitzer Prize and was runner-up in the National Headliner Awards competition.
Mr. Kelley's work for the year 2000 collected a variety of top honors, including first place in the National Headliner Awards, first and second place in the California Newspaper Association's (CNPA) competition, and first place from the San Diego Press Club. The Greater Los Angeles Press Club added a first place award to Steve Kelley for a cartoon about school shootings.
In addition to cartooning, Steve Kelley has written stories for The San Diego Union, Copley News Service, and The Wall Street Journal, and has published two collections of his cartoons. Not content with being funny in print, in 1985 Steve Kelley took his wit onstage at the Improv in Pacific Beach, California. He began writing and performing comedy, which led to seven appearances on The Tonight Show, both with Johnny Carson and Jay Leno. He co-hosted a radio show for the local CBS affiliate, and appeared frequently on The Newshour with Jim Lehrer, and on CNN and MSNBC.
Mr. Kelley has performed as the opening act for Dolly Parton, The Gatlin Brothers, Reba McEntire, Lou Rawls, and Bernadette Peters, opened for Jay Leno and Jerry Seinfeld, and performed at Carnegie Hall with the late Peter Allen.
Steve Kelley's multifaceted talent made him a coveted speaker for service organizations, business meetings, and conventions. He is on the rosters of numerous local and national speakers bureaus, and frequently donates his time and talent at fundraising events. When then-Governor Pete Wilson suddenly canceled as commencement speaker for the prestigious Francis Parker School, the senior class asked him to fill in.
Mr. Kelley co-created "Funny Money," a comedy event that for seven years provided financial support for The Child Abuse Prevention Foundation. He has helped raise money for countless local charities, including The Cancer Society, The Leukemia Society, The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, St. Clare's Home for Battered Women, The Susan B. Komen Foundation, and Mothers Against Drunk Driving. In 1999, the U.S.O. flew him aboard the USS Constellation to perform for servicemen and women at sea.
Steve Kelley graduated with honors from Dartmouth College with a degree in English. He received two citations for academic excellence in his major, served in student government, and set the school's indoor pole vault record. In his junior year, he co-founded The Dartmouth Review, an irreverent, conservative weekly that spawned similar newspapers on campuses nationwide. For four consecutive years, his cartoons won first place honors from the National Council of College Publications Advisors.
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