Mike Towry Interview

Mike Towry

"We were an entrepreneurial bunch and we didn't think that we couldn't do it. We just assumed that we could."

Mike Towry used to wander the streets looking for other kids selling comic books. With neighborhood friends like Richard Alf and Bob Sourk, he found them. At a young age, Mike started one of the first mail-order comic book businesses in San Diego. His favorite genres were science fiction, fantasy, and horror. At an initial meeting at Shel Dorf's parents' home in the Clairemont area of San Diego, Shel Dorf, Richard Alf, Barry Alfonso, Bob Sourk, Dan Stewart, and Mike discussed what was to become the first San Diego Comic-Con, "San Diego's Golden State Comic-Con."

When Mike was just 15 or 16 years old, he took over as chairman of the 1972 Comic-Con. Mike is one of the Five String Mob, introduced by Jack Kirby in Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen #144. Mike's passion to provide an intimate, friendly venue where fans can meet with creators and engage in a vibrant exchange of ideas, similar to the early days of Comic-Con, has led him to create the wildly successful San Diego Comic Fest. You can visit SDCF's website here: www.sdcomicfest.org.

Due to technical difficulties, Mike Towry will be re-interviewed this summer. For now, please enjoy this short clip from his original interview.


This project was made possible with support from Cal Humanities, an independent non-profit state partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities. For more information, visit calhum.org.