Jeff Alexander, a mainstay of the DC comics scene and former Executive Director of SPX, died suddenly over the weekend of a heart attack. He’s survived by his fiance, Erika. Shocked remembrances poured out:
When Jeff stepped down as Ignatz Coordinator, it was to become the Assistant Executive Director of SPX for 2007-2009, and in 2010 he served as the Executive Director of the show. Jeff was always a familiar sight doing whatever needed to be done, from cash pulls to crowd control. Jeff also did a lot of behind the scenes graphics work for the show. He created an Ignatz Awards comic strip every year for the program spotlighting the nominees, created the retro-pulp posters for the parties and receptions, and designed the badges for Ignatz Award Nominees to wear proudly.
Jeff Alexander was also a cartoonist in his own right, with his comic Literary Graffiti published a few years ago. Jeff had talked about taking his extra free time to get back into comic creating again, and hoped to build up enough before long to justify his own table at SPX.
Mike Rhode wrote:
Reports are appearing on Facebook that Jeff Alexander, past Small Press Expo organizer, has died overnight, apparently of a heart attack. The information has been confirmed by Warren Bernard, this year’s Executive Director. I didn’t know Jeff very well, but we were friendly when we ran into each other, and I’m very sorry to hear this news. Jeff spoke to me last year about SPX before show, and I found another interview with him on Readers Voice as well. Like many comic cons, SPX is reliant on volunteers to make everything happen, and Jeff made much of the success of recent years happen.
Greg McElhatton, who also served on the SPX board, shared his personal remembrances:
He was an amazingly talented artist, able to shift styles and techniques at the drop of a hat. Every year he drew a comic strip for the SPX program in the style of George Herriman, and the number of times where I was asked how we’d found pieces of original Krazy Kat art to use for the program was too high to count. For SPX 2010 he drew one in his own style, and I am so happy that everyone got to see just how good his own method of drawing looked, too.
For my own part, Jeff was a regular part of my yearly trip to SPX — I worked with him closely during my three years as the Ignatz Award MC and he was clearly someone who loved comics and worked hard to share that love. My sincerest condolences to everyone he left behind.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.