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Interim AGA chief rules herself out as permanent boss

| By iGB Editorial Team
Stacy Papadopoulos says she will not be Geoff Freeman's permanent replacement

A committee including Caesars Entertainment chief Mark Frissora (pictured) is to lead the search for a new head of the American Gaming Association (AGA) after the surprise departure of long-serving CEO Geoff Freeman was confirmed last month.

Stacy Papadopoulos, general counsel and SVP of industry services at the AGA, has been appointed as interim CEO of the body, which is the gaming industry’s premier national trade group in the US, until a permanent successor is named.

Papadopoulos told iGamingBusiness that she is “not pursuing the CEO job long-term”, saying she is “honoured to help lead during this period of transition and have every confidence the search committee will identify the right candidate.”

It was announced last month that Freeman (pictured) will leave the organisation at the end of this month after more than five years in charge. His departure for the Grocery Manufacturer’s Association comes just weeks after the Supreme Court rescinded PASPA – a ruling that will have a momentous impact on the industry in the US and worldwide.

Papadopoulos told iGamingBusiness: “I’m focused on working closely with the talented team at the AGA to drive our strategic priorities as well as capitalise on opportunities like the legalisation of sports betting across the US, supporting the search committee of the board as they move through the process of identifying our next CEO, and continuing to serve our members with excellence.”

Tim Wilmott, CEO of Penn National Gaming and chairman of the AGA’s board, will lead the search for Freeman’s replacement.

“The gaming industry is widely recognised as among the most popular of consumer entertainment experiences and we take seriously our role in providing this experience safely and responsibly,” Wilmott said.

“We are also proud to support the creation of strong jobs and tremendous economic value for the communities in which we operate across the United States. The growing impact of our industry, including the opportunity for states to offer legal sports betting, makes this an especially exciting time to lead our membership toward a vibrant future.”

Greg Carlin of Rush Street Gaming, Trevor Croker of Aristocrat and representatives from MGM Resorts and Las Vegas Sands will also be involved in the search for a new CEO, with support provided by executive recruitment firm Spencer Stuart.

In March, the AGA announced the addition of six new companies as board-level members: GVC Holdings, Paddy Power Betfair, Stars Group, BMM Testlabs, Golden Entertainment and Choctaw Casinos and Resorts.

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