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People to Watch 2024

Our annual list of those who demonstrate excellence in all gaming disciplines

People to Watch 2024

Welcome to the 22nd edition of this popular feature recognizing the industry’s best—the executives likely to make a lasting impact on the industry during the coming year and beyond.

“We have chosen a great group of people for our 2024 Class,” says GGB Publisher Roger Gros. “They have all already made an impact on the gaming world, and we focus on them in this feature because that impact has only just begun in most cases.”

Once an individual is named a member of the prestigious People to Watch class, he or she cannot be considered again. PTW alumni include Peter Carlino, Linda Chen, Gavin Isaacs, Valerie Spicer, Pansy Ho, Dick Haddrill, Mark Macarro, Bobby Baldwin, Bill Paulos, Ron Allen, Bobby Soper, Larry Woolf, Tony Marnell, Jim Allen, Keith Smith, John Acres, Andrew Pascal, John Connelly, Jay Snowden, and many more.

Board, a collection of some of the most knowledgeable and connected people in the gaming industry. Nominees came from all aspects of the gaming business—land-based and online operators and suppliers, regulators, attorneys, tribal government officials, public officials, academics and more.

GGB’s Editorial Advisory Board recognizes that a healthy industry needs to have extraordinary people at every level. Whether it’s regulators, tribal leaders, suppliers, operators or others, all elements of the industry have to work hand in hand, and by honoring people from all these fields, we can encourage that to continue.

This year’s honorees also reflect the growing diversity of the gaming industry. Women and minorities are truly breaking through in gaming, and their contributions are not only being recognized, but they have become leaders in their fields.

So congratulations to all the honorees in GGB’s 25 People to Watch. You are both the present and the future of the gaming industry.


Noah Acres Principal, Acres Manufacturing

Maureen Adams Executive Vice President Gaming Operations, Churchill Downs Inc.

Kelcey Allison Global COO, Aruze Gaming Global

Brett Abarbanel Executive Director, UNLV IGI

Brian Blake Vice President, Global Head of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, IGT

Julia Boguslawski Chief Marketing Officer, AGS

Mike Brennan Chief Product Officer, Bluberi

Dona Cassese Vice President Marketing, Everi Holdings

Robbie Cooke Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Star Entertainment

Ed Evans Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Cordish Gaming Group

Shawn Fluharty President, National Council of Legislators from Gaming States (NCLGS)

Katie Gehrke Marketing and Communications Manager, JCM Global

Jeannie Hovland Vice Chair, NIGC

Christopher Justice President & CEO, Pavilion Payments

Danielle Kristensen Vice President of Technology, Mille Lacs Corporate Ventures / Grand Casinos

Kim Barker Lee Executive Vice President and Chief Legal Officer, Bally’s Corp.

Kara Matthew COO, BMM Innovation Group

Eileen O’Brien Member, Massachusetts Gaming Commission

Tom O’Brien President, Americas and EMEA, Aristocrat Gaming

Niklas Rytterstrom President, Borgata Hotel Casino

Greg Sarris Tribal Chairman, Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria

James Silva Vice Chairman, Morongo Band of Mission Indians; Chairman, California Nations Indian Gaming Association

Jeffrey Soffer CEO and Chairman, Fontainebleau Development

Max Tappeiner EVP Operations, Wynn Resorts

Mor Weizer CEO, Playtech PLC

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