Steve Sack Wins Berryman Cartoonist Award
Honorable Mention to Ruben Bolling

By Sonni Efron

Steve Sack, longtime editorial cartoonist for the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, has won the 2020 Clifford K. and James T. Berryman Award from the National Press Foundation.

The winning cartoons offered indelible visual commentary on the COVID-19 pandemic, the fallout from George Floyd’s murder, the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and the U.S. Postal Service during the 2020 election.

Ruben Bolling, who draws the weekly comic strip “Tom the Dancing Bug,” won honorable mention. His work included a dark interpretation of President Donald Trump’s America in the style of the famed children’s book writer Richard Scarry.

Sack claimed the Berryman Award in 2006 and went on to win the Pulitzer Prize in 2013. Judge Robert (R.J.) Matson, last year’s Berryman winner, praised Sack both for his superior drawing skills and his “sharp, tight gags with strong visual punch.” Judge Julie Triolo said, “He takes very grave situations and delivers a crispness and clarity that enables the reader an immediate ‘aha’ moment.”

The Berryman award was created by in 1989 by Florence Berryman, former art critic of The Washington Star, in memory of her late father and brother, both Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonists. The award carries a $2,500 prize.

The judges were Matson, Triolo, Charles Self and Kevin Goldberg.

Sack, who creates his works electronically, said he intends to use the $2,500 award proceed for a new iPad.

Bolling responded to news of his honorable mention in an email: “I do not concede, and in fact I claim victory. My lawyers demand a recount.”


Help Make Good Journalists Better
Donate to the National Press Foundation to help us keep journalists informed on the issues that matter most.