Saturday, June 28, 2008

Congrats to Eric Stephenson!

News broke today that Erik Larsen is stepping down as Publisher of Image Comics, with Eric Stephenson set to replace him. Eric currently works as Image's Executive Director, and in that role he worked closely with Erik, so he's been pretty well groomed for the job.

When I started at Image (almost 8 years ago!), Jim Valentino was Publisher and Anthony Bozzi was Marketing Director. They made me feel like family, and I grew quite attached to both of them -- to such an extent that when Bozzi left and was replaced by Eric, I was really apprehensive. "Eric Stephenson? The guy who worked on all those old Liefeld comics? What makes him qualified for this job?" I thought.

Well, all my doubts were for nothing. I was living in Southern California at the time, and Eric and I got together one Saturday afternoon and hit it off immediately. For the rest of my time living there, Eric and I (along with Image's production manager, Allen Hui) would meet on Monday nights at a local coffee house to just hang out and talk comics (among other things).

Eric's always been immensely supportive of my work at Image, and our weekly get-togethers is one of the things I miss most about California. Now I have to settle for seeing him once a year when he comes up to Seattle for the Emerald City Comicon.

Anyway, to anyone who's reading this and feel apprehensive about the shake-up at Image, let me be the first to tell you that you've got nothing to worry about. Eric's more than up to the task. Good things are on the horizon for Image Comics.