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Bowlers Journal At 100 By Mort Luby Jr. KEYSTROKES (Part 12 in a 12-Part Series) AND BRUSHSTROKES


(Editor’s Note: For the past 11 months, Publisher & Editor Emeritus Mort Luby Jr. has been chronicling the 100-year history of Bowlers Journal. In last month’s installment, two longtime employees made an offer to buy National Bowlers Journal Inc., which followed a huge embezzlement, an FBI investigation, a battle with the IRS, a fierce confrontation with a new competitor and disruption of the company’s previously placid relationship with its bankers.)


The thieving bookkeeper eventually died of AIDS, we made our peace with the tax people, and the FBI and our bank- ers blessed the sale of the company to Mike Panozzo and Keith Hamilton. Mike and Keith agreed with my request that the corporation title be changed from Nation- al Bowlers Journal Inc. to Luby Publishing Inc. I thought Grandpa Dave Luby, our illustrious found- er, would appreciate that. Meanwhile, Mike and


Keith have launched other successful magazines,


including Bowling Center Management and Pro Shop Operator. They publish a huge annual catalog for the Billiard and Bowling Institute of America. Of course, Bowlers Journal International and Billiards Digest continue to soldier on, as they have for all these years. Not intimidated by the digital revolution, they also have created the online magazine Bowlers Journal interactive. My hare-brained idea to


Mort Luby Jr.


start a video game publication back in the 1980s was just about the only blot on the company’s history. All of the


current publications are doing fine, every one of them solidly in the black. As I survey all this shortly after my


82nd birthday, I remain confident that the company is in very good hands. It’s financially solid, and we have a terrific staff. When ad salesman nonpareil Bob


Inserra retired after 21 years, he was replaced by industry veteran Barb Peltz, who obviously shared Bob’s enthusiasm and love for our very complicated industry. Barb conferred with her predecessor several times every week until Bob passed away recently after a long bout with cancer. Although he was getting a bit long


of tooth, former editor Jim Dressel has remained in harness at Bowlers Journal with the exalted title of executive editor. He now visits the office once a week, and continues to assemble BJI’s weekly business-to- business Cyber Report. Bob Johnson — a bowler, journalist and


longtime BJI contributor from California — joined the home office staff in 2000 and was named editor in 2008. Bob


EVERYTHING BOWLING, ALL THE TIME


In addition to Bowlers Journal, Luby Publishing Inc. publishes Bowling Center Management and Billiards Digest, as well as other titles serving the bowling and billiards industries.


elevated the standards of every aspect of the magazine. Indeed, BJI writers and editors — led by Bob, with well over 60


national writing awards — continue to reap accolades every year. (BJI snared five of six available awards in the most recent United States Bowling Congress writing competition.) I still wander into the LPI offices on


Michigan Avenue once a week so that Nancy Dudzinski, the company’s longtime business manager, can continue to handle my personal bookkeeping. Maybe if I live to be 100, I’ll learn to balance a checkbook. (Don’t hold your breath.) After Nancy has paid my bills and guided me through other financial matters, I often spend the rest of the day as a volunteer proofreader. This is partly altruistic and partly selfish. I have an apoplectic fit whenever I see a rare typographical error in one of our periodicals. How can you possibly sum up LPI’s


100-year adventure in sports and journal- ism? Is there any sensible way to trace the trajectory of a company from its humble


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