McKee energized by drawing the line

Editorial page cartoonist Rick McKee draws attention. He always has.


At age 12, he fired off a letter to then-President Carter questioning support for the Equal Rights Amendment.

He got a response, too, although he suspects it was just the usual, polite form letter politicians send their critics.

McKee kept sharing his opinions. He graduated from Samford University in Birmingham, Ala., where he was political cartoonist for The Samford Crimson.

He worked in the graphics department of The Atlanta Constitution and came to Augusta in 1990 as The Chronicle's newsroom graphics editor.

He became the newspaper's editorial page cartoonist in 1998, and has since won many awards for opinion cartooning.

"I see my job as boiling down the essence of the news of the day into an easily digestible visual form that will, hopefully, cause the reader to think," McKee said. "My goal is to challenge readers to consider an issue in a different way, and if I can be entertaining in the process, then I feel like I accomplished my mission."

His cartoons are syndicated by King Features to hundreds of newspapers across North America. They have appeared in Newsweek, USA Today, the New York Times, Washington Post, and have been featured on CNN Headline News and the Fox News Channel.

"The best part of my job is getting paid to do what I love to do and interacting with my wonderful readers," he said. "The most difficult part is finding that right balance of pushing the envelope without shredding it ... which sometimes happens."