Josh Elder is an award-winning cartoonist and nationally renowned advocate for using comics in the classroom. He has contributed stories to major comic book franchises including Batman, Superman and StarCraft, but is best known for co-creating (along with artist Erich Owen) the nationally syndicated comic strip and certified awesome graphic novel series Mail Order Ninja. He has also worked as an associate editor at Wizard: The Comic Magazine and regularly writes graphic novel reviews for the Chicago Sun-Times.
But these days Josh spends more time in the classroom than at his keyboard. To support his goal of revolutionizing education by integrating comics into the curriculum, Josh has spoken before thousands of students at schools, libraries and literary festivals, and served as an educational consultant for clients like the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, the Chicago Public School System and the Illinois State Library Association. In 2009 Josh founded Reading With Pictures, a nonprofit that advocates the use of comics in the classroom to promote literacy and improve educational outcomes for all students. Now Josh directs RWP’s efforts to get comics into schools and get schools into comics by developing resources for educators, generating research opportunities for academics and providing curriculum guidelines for publishers.
A graduate of Northwestern University, Josh makes his home in the small, midwestern town of Chicago, Illinois.