Farewell to Friends

CAKE would like to thank our emeritus organizers who stepped down in 2016:A jack-of-all-trades, Ben Bertin served as an organizer from 2014 to 2016, focusing on show logistics and support. He tackled all his tasks, even the most thankless, with excellence and enthusiasm to make the show the best it could be. Ben’s good nature and connections to the community were crucial to the success of CAKE; he always knew just the right person to recruit for much-needed help. Since he stepped down to plan a cross-country move, we have missed his intelligence, wit, and sensitivity. We thank Ben for everything he’s done for the festival and wish him well in his future ventures.CAKE co-founder Max Morris stepped down in 2016 from his important role as show organizer, and this truly marked the end of an era. Since the show’s beginnings, Max worked tirelessly to design, plan, and promote events; craft panels and workshops; and connect CAKE with the rest of Chicago’s arts communities. The public face of the festival for so many in Chicago, and a large part of its soul for those of us who have helped make CAKE, Max’s energy and profound dedication to artistic excellence are hard to match. We thank Max for his outstanding work on the show over the years, as well as his dedication to comics and art more generally in Chicago.An organizer since before CAKE even had a name, Jeff Zwirek has been an indispensable resource for the festival. From postering, print logistics, and art direction to creating our sponsorship platform and shaping our methods and practices, Jeff has worked tirelessly to make CAKE the equal of any comics festival in the world. Although he will still be an instrumental part of the show, in 2016 he stepped back from being a core organizer, so we want to take this moment to thank him for his commitment, his talent, and his genuine, authentic passion for comics. Always patient, always friendly, and always conscious of the big picture, CAKE owes so much to Jeff, and we thank him for all he has done.