Kevin Jeffrey Clash is an American puppeteer and voice actor whose characters included Elmo, Clifford, and Hoots the Owl. Clash developed an interest in puppetry at an early age, and began performing for local TV children's shows in his hometown of Baltimore, Maryland by the time he was a teenager. In the early 1980s, he began working in Captain Kangaroo, and began performing in Sesame Street in 1984. He was the third puppeteer to perform Elmo, the character he became the most famous for, and became an executive producer and director for the show. Clash worked in various productions for the Muppets and Jim Henson Productions and in other projects. He resigned from Sesame Street in late 2012, after allegations of improper sexual conduct with minors, which Clash denied, stating that any relationships that occurred were between consenting adults.
In 2006, Clash wrote an autobiography called My Life as a Furry Red Monster. He was featured in the documentary Being Elmo: A Puppeteer's Journey in 2011.