Joan Hilty

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Joan Hilty
Area(s)Cartoonist, Editor
AwardsBest Graphic Story, International Horror Guild Award

Joan Hilty is an American comic book editor, cartoonist and an educator. She has worked in editorial for mainstream publishers DC Comics and Nickelodeon, and worked independently as both a writer-artist and editor. As an editor she has worked with writers and cartoonists such as Neil Gaiman, G. Willow Wilson, Greg Rucka, Gene Luen Yang, Jim Ottaviani, and Kevin Baker.[1]

Early life and education[edit]

Hilty grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area and at age 11, she took cartooning classes with Trina Robbins at College of Marin.[2] She received a B.A. in Visual Arts from Brown University.[3][4] After college she returned to the Bay Area, where she re-connected with Trina Robbins, and was published in an issue of Wimmen's Comix.[2] In 1992 she created the characters Immola and the Luna Legion, the first team of lesbian superheroes, appearing in Oh..., a female-oriented comics anthology.[5][6] She produced the syndicated strip Bitter Girl, about lesbian dating, from 2001 to 2012.[1]


She was an editor for DC Comics from 1995 to 2010.[7] She began with the company's mature-readers Vertigo imprint, for which she won the 1999 International Horror Guild Award for the Vertigo anthology Flinch.[4] She switched to editing superhero titles in 2000, established the Johnny DC imprint for young readers in 2004, and in 2008 began curating original graphic novels for Vertigo.[4][8][9]

In 2011, she co-founded 5E, a New-York-based organization of independent editors.[1] The following year she co-founded Page Turner, a "boutique book agency and content producer specializing in graphic novels, illustrated content and comics-related transmedia".[10] In 2016, she became Comics and Magazine Editor for Nickelodeon.[11][12]

She is a member of the faculty for Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in Baltimore,[4] and the School of Visual Arts (SVA) in New York City.[3]

Her art has been exhibited at the New Museum in New York City, and the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore.[3]

Personal life[edit]

Hilty is openly lesbian.[7]


  1. ^ a b c "ABOUT |". Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  2. ^ a b "An Oral History of Wimmen's Comix Part 2 | The Comics Journal". Retrieved 2017-04-27.
  3. ^ a b c "School of Visual Arts | SVA | New York City > Hilty Joan". Retrieved 2017-01-29.
  4. ^ a b c d Art, Maryland Institute College of. "Joan Hilty | MICA". Retrieved 2017-01-29.
  5. ^ "Yet Another First Gay Superhero". Bleeding Cool Comic Book, Movie, TV News. 2009-11-18. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  6. ^ "Beek's Books - Oh... (comicbook reviews)". Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  7. ^ a b "Geek Girl On The Street Reports: Joan Hilty On Being A Woman At DC Comics". Bleeding Cool Comic Book, Movie, TV News. 2011-09-07. Retrieved 2017-01-29.
  8. ^ "Publishing, After a Life in Publishing". Retrieved 2017-01-29.
  9. ^ "Vertigo Announces Push to Acquire Graphic Novels". Retrieved 2017-04-27.
  10. ^ "Page Turner: Flip to the Future!". Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  11. ^ "About Us". 5E. Retrieved 2017-04-27.
  12. ^ "NYCC '16: DARK HORSE - Classified". Newsarama. Retrieved 2017-04-27.

External links[edit]