Phil Bildner grew up in the New York City suburb of Jericho, Long Island. He attended Johns Hopkins University where he received his undergraduate degree in political science and New York University School of Law. He was admitted to the bar in both New York and New Jersey. Phil's first love has always been teaching and working with children, so after a year practicing law he decided to pursue a career in education. He went back to school and earned a master's degree in elementary education from Long Island University. Phil's first picture book was published by Simon & Schuster and in 2006 he left the classroom in order to write full time. In addition to his picture books: Shoeless Joe & Black Betsy, The Shot Heard 'Round the World, Twenty One Elephants, etc. and teen novels: Playing the Field, Busted, Phil is the co-creator (with Loren Long) of The New York Times bestselling chapter book series, Sluggers! In 2010, the final two books in the series hits shelves. In 2007 Phil began chaperoning student-volunteer trips to Hurricane Katrina-ravaged New Orleans. He founded The NOLA Tree, a non-profit service organization, along with his friend Ana Galan and a former student, Indiana Hoover.
John Holyfield's first picture book was The Hard-Times Jar by Ethel Footman Smothers, for which he received a Flying Start in Publishers Weekly . A renowned fine artist, his paintings and prints can be found in galleries nationwide. John began painting at the age of nine, and his work is rich in cultural themes that capture the essence of the African American experience. John lives and paints in Rosemont, West Virginia.