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Player welfare expert Dr Meg Popovic joins EPIC Global Solutions

| By iGB Freelance
Confirmation of a notable appointment to support EPIC’s ongoing expansion in the North American professional sports market.

EPIC Global Solutions has confirmed a key hire to serve its North American audience, with Dr Meg Popovic enhancing a long-standing relationship with the organisation by confirming a new role as its senior professional sports manager.

The expert in player welfare for elite sports stars will be responsible for managing and growing EPIC’s relationships with the leading professional sports leagues, organisations and franchises across the continent, supporting a portfolio that already includes relationships with the NCAA, MLB, NFLPA PAF and MLSPA.

EPIC Global Solutions are leaders in provision for minimising the risk of gambling-related harm, through a range of education, advice and consultancy services that are informed by lived experience from those who have experienced gambling addiction at first hand. 

Popovic has been a long-standing advocate of the company’s work, including enlisting as a member of its Pro Sport Advisory Board, which brings together world-leading experts to discuss how to reduce the effects of harmful gambling in sporting environments.

Her membership of the collective has seen her support several of EPIC’s headline events and communications opportunities within the past year, such as appearances on discussion panels at prestigious sports and gambling industry events and being a key speaker and session leader at the company’s Gambling Harm Prevention in Sport summit at London’s Wembley Stadium in February 2023, where it unveiled a white paper on the steps that professional sport can take in order to keep gambling issues within its ranks to a minimum.

Popovic came to the attention of EPIC as a key partner for promoting its mission thanks to her earlier roles in elite sport, which included five years as director of wellbeing and performance for the NHL’s Toronto Maple Leafs before becoming the co-founder and chief learning officer at NextPlayU, a career accelerator and community for former NCAA, Olympic and pro athletes.

“The prospect of partaking in what EPIC does resonated with me on every level – professionally and personally,” explained Popovic, holder of a PhD from Western University in London, Canada.

“The individuals who have built this company and deliver its work are some of the most kind, ethical and forward-thinking people I’ve ever met. It’s an honour to be part of this EPIC Global Solutions team. 

“The landscape of gambling in relationship to professional sports is changing rapidly, and EPIC is bringing forth authentic, world-class programming and consultation that will be of service to all involved – teams, staff and the athletes. This makes me very, very excited.”

Bringing Popovic into the company’s roster has been welcomed as a fantastic acquisition by its director of sports programmes, Ben McGregor.

“We’ve enjoyed the benefit of Meg’s wonderful expertise over the past couple of years, thanks to the advice she has helped to provide since first agreeing to support our Pro Sport Advisory Board and, as soon as we understood that there was a chance to make this a more formal agreement, we didn’t hesitate to take the opportunity,” he explained.

“To bring in someone who has been invited to share knowledge on athlete welfare best practise with the likes of the NHL, MLB, NBA and top world cycling teams will clearly be a major asset to EPIC and all the clients we serve within professional sports.

“There is no doubt that her knowledge and connections within the industry will bring mutual benefits to all involved, as we seek to spread the important message of how to negate some of gambling’s more harmful effects at a time when sport in North America is becoming increasingly connected with the rapidly expanding legalised sports wagering market in the US.”