J. A. Allen has worked as an educator and cartoonist. He is the holder of a doctorate in education, from Northern Illinois University, and has taught graduate cartoon-based learning classes for teachers at Drake University. His cartoon work includes magazine gag cartoons, editorial cartoons for Chicago Sun-Times Features Syndicate, and a web cartoon strip “The Beauforts” and it’s character spinoffs. In 2019 created Decoding Asthma, a graphic novel, incorporating “The Beauforts” characters to promote asthma literacy in middle school. It is distributed by a national asthma allergy organization.