Matt Groening, 1954 - Matt Groening was born and raised in Portland, Oregon. He moved to Los Angeles in 1980 to start writing the comic strip "Life in Hell" for the newspaper he worked for. The strip had premiered in 1977 and appears in over 250 newspapers worldwide. Groening got his big break when the Fox television network was looking for a filler for "The Tracy Ullman Show." James L. Brooks had seen some of the "Life in Hell" strips and offered Groening a chance to create 30 second skits for the show. The skits were so well received that the newly titled "The Simpsons" for which Groening was now creator and executive producer of, debuted on Fox as a half hour Christmas special on December 17, 1989 and as a regular series on January 14, 1990. In 1993, Groening formed "Bongo Comics Group" which publishes "Simpsons Comics," "Itchy and Scratchy Comics," "Bartman," "Radioactive Man," "Lisa Comics" and "Krusty Comics." In 1995, he founded and published "Zongo Comics," which included "Jimbo" and "Fleener" Groening oversees all of the licensing and merchandising of the "The Simpsons." He is also a best selling author, publishing books such as "Life in Hell," "Work is Hell" and "School is Hell," based on his "Life in Hell" comic strip, and "Bart Simpson's Guide to Life" based on "The Simpsons" animation. Groening is also creator and Executive Producer of "Futurama," another animated prime time television show.
Norpoth holds an M.A. and Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Michigan. He has previously taught at the Universities of Texas, Arizona, and Cologne, Germany, as well as in the ECPR summer school on quantitative methods. He regularly assists the New York Times with its Election night analysis and has served as a polling analyst for the Foreign Policy Association.