Reynold Ruffins
Reynold Ruffins A’51

Reynold Ruffins and his wife Joan Ruffins are both alumni of The Cooper Union Art School. Reynold Ruffins, an illustrator, graphic designer and artist was an early member of Push Pin Studios where he worked along side his classmates, Ed Sorel A’51, Seymor Chwast A’51, and Milton Glaser A’51. He left that firm in 1960 to work as a freelance artist. In 1963, he co-founded a design studio Ruffins/Taback with Simms Taback A’53 where he worked for 28 years. In 1989 Ruffins and Taback started Cardtricks, a greeting card company.

He created designs and illustrations for publications like The New York Times Magazine, Time, Life, Fortune, Gourmet, and Essence magazines. And he illustrated more than 20 children’s books. They include 13 books that he co-authored with Jane Sarnoff.

Reynold Ruffins took up painting in the late 1990s. He was also an art instructor, teaching classes at Queens College, Parsons, the School of Visual Arts, and The New School.

He passed away at his home in Sag Harbor, N.Y in 2021.


Reynold Ruffins received a Cooper Union Cooper Union Presidential Citation in 1972 and the CUAA Augustus Saint-Gaudens award in 1993 and was inducted into The Cooper Union Hall of Fame in 2009.

He won the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor Award in 1997 for “Running the Road to ABC.”

The Cooper Union hosted an Exhibition of his work along with that of Joan Ruffins at the Stuyvesant/Fish house during the spring of 2023.


  • A Life in Art Entwined: Works by Joan and Reynold Ruffins A’51, The Cooper Union website, 3/01/2023. Link
  • Reynold Ruffins Illustrator and Artist, The East Hampton Star, 7/22/2021. Link
  • Reynold Ruffins. Society of Illustrators, Link