The judges for the 2015 Eisner Awards have been announced, and as usual they are a stellar group: Carr D’Angelo, librarian/professor Richard Graham, Marvel the Untold Story author Sean Howe, academic Susan Kirtley, volunteer Ron McFee and the incomparable Maggie Thompson, who I can’t believe has never been a judge before!

The judges will meet in early April to binge read every comic put out in 2015, and nominees will be announced shortly afterwards. More info here.

Carr D’Angelo, the founding owner of Earth-2 Comics, operates two stores in the Los Angeles area with his wife, Susan Avallone. Earth-2 Comics Sherman Oaks is the 2007 recipient of the Will Eisner Spirit of Comics Retailer Award. In 2011, Earth-2 Sherman Oaks and Northridge were named “Best Place to Stock Up on Trade Paperbacks” by the LA Weekly in their annual Best of Los Angeles issue. D’Angelo started his career in New York as an editor and writer for Starlog, Fangoria, and Comics Scene magazines. Moving to Los Angeles, he worked as a script reader, studio executive, and movie producer. He currently serves as vice president of ComicsPRO, the trade association for comic book specialty retailers.

Richard Graham is media librarian and associate professor at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln and managing editor of SANE (Sequential Art Narratives in Education), an academic e-journal dedicated to using comics in classrooms. Richard is a graduate of the Library School at the University of Iowa and holds a master’s degree in education from Texas A&M, Corpus Christi. In 2012 he was nominated for an Eisner Award for editing Government Issue: Comics for the People (2012), a collection of comics produced for the federal and state governments. He currently maintains online collections of government and educational comic books as well as writes graphic novel/comics reviews for the website No Flying, No Tights.

Sean Howe is the author of Marvel Comics: The Untold Story, which received an Eisner Award for Best Comics-Related Book in 2013. His writing has appeared in Wired, Rolling Stone, and the Los Angeles Times. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Susan Kirtley is an associate professor of English and the Director of Rhetoric and Composition at Portland (Oregon) State University, where she is developing a Comics Studies program. Her research interests include visual rhetoric and graphic narratives, and she has published pieces on comics for the popular press and academic journals. Her book Lynda Barry: Girlhood Through the Looking Glass, was the 2013 Eisner Award winner for Best Educational/Academic Work.

Ron McFee has been a volunteer with Comic-Con International for 35 years and has served on the Convention Committee since 1992. He has spent the last 17 years working in the professional registration department, assisting the industry professionals through the application and registration process. Ron also volunteers with San Diego Friends of the library, helping to raise money and bring awareness to how comics can play an important role in literacy. In 2014 he piloted participation of the San Diego city libraries in Free Comic Book Day. Ron has been an executive producer of two animated features, with others in development.

Maggie Thompson has been writing and editing news and articles about comic books and comic strips for more than half a century. Her earliest such work appeared in the pioneering fan publication Comic Art, co-edited with Don Thompson, starting in 1961. After three decades of co-editing the industry publication Comics Buyer’s Guide, she has begun regular contributions to Comic-Con’s Toucan blog and to Diamond Comic Distributors’ Scoop newsletter.