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Meet The BD Staff
Mike Panozzo joined Billiards Digest in 1980, after receiving his journalism degree from Marquette University. During his 26-plus years at the magazine's helm, BD has grown from a 48-page bi-monthly to its current 100-page monthly format with subscribers in more than 40 countries. He has served on the Billiard Congress of America board of directors and as president of the Billiard & Bowling Institute of America.
Azra Halilovic came to Luby Publishing in 2013. She moved from Minnesota in 2011 to study at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where she earned a masters in journalism in 2012. Prior to joining Luby Publishing, she reported for the investigative reporting project CU-Citizen Access and WILL Illinois Public Media (an NPR outlet). After moving to Chicago in 2012, she reported for Hoy Chicago and worked as a technical writer in the healthcare industry. Azra also holds degrees in English, Spanish and music.
Jenny Bradley joined BD in May 2005 after serving as head creative designer for Catch 22 Creative, a Milwaukee-based creative services firm. She graduated from Savannah College of Art and Design in 2002 with a degree in graphic arts.
George Fels claims that, for better or worse, pool has been his only mistress for 40-plus years. His witty, articulate monthly column, "Tips and Shafts," has columnists and senior editors from both The New York Times and Sports Illustrated in its audience. Having written among the best books ever in each of two categories (he also co-authored two bestsellers on bodybuilding with Mr. Olympia winner Franco Columbu), Fels' fourth pool title, How Would You Play This?, was published in 1998. He was graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a double major in English and Speech; widowed, he lives in Chicago with his teenaged son, Sam, and their beagle, Moe.
Mike Shamos began writing for Billiards Digest in 1988, and contributes monthly with his highly praised "Chronicles" column, an illustrious and often unusual look into billiards history. A BCA Certified Instructor since 1997, Shamos has served as Chairperson of the BCA Statistics and Records Committee since 1990 and is currently Chairperson of the BCA Hall of Fame Committee. He frequently narrates three-cushion videotapes with Robert Byrne for Accu-Stats, has refereed national championship and international three-cushion matches, and has written more than 100 billiard articles and three books. Shamos is co-director of the Institute for eCommerce at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh and Special Counsel to Reed Smith LLP, a large Pittsburgh law firm. He has also served as an examiner of computerized voting systems for Texas, Nevada and Pennsylvania.
Robert Byrne has been writing for Billiards Digest since its first issue in 1978. His articles and six books on the game make him the leading billiard writer in the world. Byrne's Standard Book of Pool and Billiards has chalked up sales of more than 250,000 copies, making it the world's dominant book on carom and pocket billiards. In addition to his writing, Byrne is also the star of six successful videotapes on pool. Byrne has written fifteen non-pool books, including seven novels, one of which, Thrill, became NBC's "Monday Night Movie" in 1996.
Michael Geffner is a New York City writer whose work has appeared in Details, The Sporting News, The Village Voice, Texas Monthly, Penthouse, Icon, Unlimited and many other publications.
Since 1978, Billiards Digest magazine has been the pool world’s best source for news, tournament coverage, player profiles, bold editorials, and advice on how to play pool. Our instructors include superstars Nick Varner and Jeanette Lee. Every issue features the pool accessories and equipment you love — pool cues, pool tables, instruction aids and more. Columnists Mike Shamos and R.A. Dyer examine legends like Willie Mosconi and Minnesota Fats, and dig deep into the histories of pool games like 8-ball, 9-ball and straight pool.
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