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Posted at 4:05 PM ET, 04/15/2010

PULITZERS: A third cartoonist won the big Prize, too

By Michael Cavna

And the cartoonists shall inherit the lectern. At least when it comes to the Pulitzers.

On Monday, we reported that Mark Fiore won the Editorial Cartooning award for his animations (the first such entry to garner the honor). And future comic-strip writer Gene Weingarten (his strip "Barney & Clyde" debuts in June), of course, won his second Pulitzer for Feature Writing -- for "Fatal Distraction," his heart-wrenching magazine article on deadly forgetfulness ("bullying of the basal ganglia," I believe Gene called it) involving children who die of hyperthermia in car seats.

Turns out, though, another reporter/comic-writer hybrid besides Gene picked up a Pulitzer on Monday. For a different story about auto-related distraction.

Alan Gardner at notes that Matt Richtel won the National Reporting award for his series of New York Times articles titled "Driven to Distraction," about multitasking while driving and its sometimes-dire consequences.

Richtel is better known to many comics fans as Theron Heir, the nom-de-toon under which he writes the strip "Rudy Park." (His co-creator on the strip is Darrin Bell, who also does "Candorville" -- which, like "Barney & Clyde," is syndicated by Washington Post Writers Group. In this business, it quickly all gets so Two Degrees of Separation.)

So who knows? At the Pulitzer ceremony, cartooning tips might just be swapped as frequently as reporting tips.

By Michael Cavna  | April 15, 2010; 4:05 PM ET
Categories:  General  | Tags:  Matt Richtel, New York Times, Pulitzer Prizes, Rudy Park, Theron Heir  
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