Type of entity
Authorized form of name
Wicks, Alfred (Ben)
Parallel form(s) of name
Standardized form(s) of name according to other rules
Other form(s) of name
Identifiers for corporate bodies
Dates of existence
1926 - 2000
Alfred Wicks was born October 1, 1926 in London England. He quit school at the age of 14 to work at a variety of jobs including a bootmaker, shipping clerk, and barrow salesman. He joined the British Army, learning to play the clarinet and saxophone. After the war he found work as a professional musician with an orchestra onboard the "Queen Elizabeth", a luxury cruise liner. He was given the name "Ben", after Benny Goodman, by the orchestra leader. Ben Wicks took art lessons at London's Camberwell Art School.
Wicks emigrated to Calgary, Alberta in 1957 with his wife Doreen. He found work as a milkman. It was while doing this in 1962 when he sold his first cartoon to the Saturday Evening Post. His cartoons would also be published in the Albertan. In 1966 he moved to Toronto to join the staff of the Toronto Telegram. Around this time he also began syndicating his cartoons including his political series "The Outcasts". His single frame cartoons appeared in 84 Canadian and 100 U. S. newspapers and his "Outcasts" series was carried by 52 Canadian newspapers. Ben Wicks was also the author of 43 books, numerous magazine articles and became a T. V. personality with his own show "The World of Wicks".
Aside from his career as a cartoonist, Ben Wicks was known for his humanitarian work, often using his drawings to bring attention world issues and human suffering. He teamed up with his wife Dorothy Wicks, a citizenship court judge, to establish a variety of charitable foundations to combat poverty, illiteracy, and malnutrition. He was awarded the Order of Canada in 1986.
Ben Wicks died September 10, 2000 of cancer, leaving behind his wife Doreen, and three children, and eight grandchildren.