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English in United States

Dame de Couer - Lisa Boyle

Autobiography

I was a summer baby – the only one in my entire family – born in Scotland around 400 years after I should have been - where I have been resident ever since. In 2000 I graduated from The University of Edinburgh with an MA(Hons.) Degree in English Language and English Literature. Like many graduates I was unsure of what I wanted to do in terms of a career, so I took some time out to work as a retail manager whilst I decided. In 2003 I returned to academia to undertake a Post Graduate qualification at my Alma mater, this time in the Education Faculty, and I graduated (again!) a year later with a Merit level Post Graduate Certificate in Education – specifically in teaching English. I then worked as an English teacher for the next 13 years.

I have led something of a varied existence and after meeting my now husband, I began to dabble in the world of casinos. At first, I saw this as a way to develop my mental acuity whilst also being an activity I could share with my partner. Like many players, card games were what took my interest initially; Blackjack with its low house edge was especially appealing. Card counting was the gateway to challenging myself with more advanced techniques. Had you told me when I graduated for the first time that I would shortly find myself travelling to multiple locations at home and abroad to play in casinos, I would have found the idea crazy. The professional gambling world is full of interesting and very bright people and it was fun to be part of it for a while, but playing as a woman comes with a unique set of challenges and eventually they outweighed the positives for me.

My husband founded ThePOGG whilst I was still a practicing teacher and as the business grew he brought me on board full time. I have a fairly individual skillset and as such I am well suited to the demands of this dynamic industry.

My role at ThePOGG is two-fold. My keen eye for detail and lack of tolerance for low standards (in all things), mean that I have responsibility for undertaking client commissioned audits. I am very familiar with regulatory standards and the relevant compliance documentation associated with the individual regulators, meaning that I am often able to help clients address failures in compliance before this becomes a significant issue for them. I am also the main casino reviewer for the site – you will find me writing under the pseudonym Dame de Couer (the queen of hearts is my favourite playing card).

Beyond the professional sphere I have many interests – too many to cover here! I love reading – Alasdair Gray, William Shakespeare, and Angela Carter are particular passions of mine. I also have a keen interest in Tudor history – I will read anything I can get my hands on about Anne Bolyen or Elizabeth I – there is something about a woman making waves in a man’s world. I write for pleasure when I have the time, and this is something I would love to develop when I get the chance. I am an avid tennis fan – Rafa Nadal, Andy Murray, Juan Martin del Potro and Sefanos Tsitsipas all have a special place in my heart – I like them honest and hardworking I guess. Cooking, interior design and crafting are all pastimes of mine – I love making traditional spun cotton ornaments to give as gifts or use as decorations.

I am privileged to have the best husband in the world and we are very lucky that our 8 crazy cats let us live happily in their house with them, asking only that we cover all expenses - they need hired help after all! There is never a dull moment.

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