Wednesday, August 14, 2013

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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Responsible Gaming Education Week

Holly Wetzel, Vice President of Communications, American Gaming Association

Watch as Holly talks about the AGA's plans to celebrate Responsible Gaming Education Week.  

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Becoming Fluent in Responsible Gaming

By Brian Lehman, Communications Manager, American Gaming Association

It’s quite easy to recognize that diversity is one of our industry’s greatest strengths. Walk into any casino around the country and you’ll quickly appreciate that from employees to patrons, the gaming community is truly a multicultural one.

Another feature of our industry that spans all types of customers, regions, and companies is a dedication to responsible gaming.

With this in mind, we at the American Gaming Associated (AGA) have tabbed this year’s Responsible Gaming Education Week (RGEW) with the theme: “How Do You Say Responsible Gaming?” The week of Aug. 5-9 marks the 16th annual RGEW, and it’s a chance for casinos across the country to spread the message that no matter what language employees and customers speak, it’s important that they all speak responsible gaming. Materials that reflect the theme, along with the AGA’s responsible gaming brochures in English, Spanish, French, Vietnamese, Chinese and Korean, can be purchased in time for RGEW if you order before July 8.
One way we’ll illustrate this theme is by asking member companies to film their employees delivering key responsible gaming messages in their native languages during RGEW. The AGA will create a compilation video of these messages, which we’ll make available on our YouTube channel and through social media.

Throughout RGEW, our hope is that gaming employees and the public keep it fun. And that becomes a whole lot easier when we educate each other and speak a language that’s truly universal: responsible gaming. 

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

AGA Communications Awards

Listen to Brian Lehman, Communications Manager, American Gaming Association, speak about this year's AGA Communications Awards. Awards will be given in 15 different categories and the deadline for entry is July 1. For more information go to 

Thursday, June 13, 2013

What is a Gambling Disorder?

By Amy Kugler, Director of Communications and Outreach, National Center for Responsible Gaming

Did you know that approximately 1 percent of the U.S. adult population has been diagnosed with a gambling disorder at some point in their lifetime?

Also, research shows that between 2 to 7 percent of youth develop a gambling problem. These facts and more are highlighted in the latest video from the National Center for Responsible Gaming (NCRG), titled “What is a Gambling Disorder?” This video was designed so that everyone can understand the latest science-based information about gambling disorders, including whom and how many people the addiction impacts and resources available for help.

Please watch and share this two-minute video that answers key questions on this issue with up-to-date research. This is the first video from the NCRG’s latest education initiative, and we’ll bring you more videos as they’re available

Monday, June 10, 2013

Honoring Gaming’s Top Communicators

By Brian Lehman, communications manager, American Gaming Association

When I sit back and think about all the different ways that I consume information – television, drive time radio, the Internet and social media, just to name a few – I realize that one of the common threads among them all is the ubiquitous nature of marketing and advertising. It is no wonder because the competition for a consumer’s attention (and dollars) is fierce, especially when it comes to entertainment spending.

It is in this highly-competitive world of entertainment marketing that gaming industry communicators find themselves, and it is in this environment where they thrive. They are able to cut through the clutter to present their products, properties and experiences in a way that sticks with consumers, gets them in the door and keeps them coming back.

It is too often that the men and women who achieve this feat are overlooked. That is why the AGA’s annual Communications Awards are one of my favorite AGA programs. It gives us the opportunity to honor the truly excellent marketing, advertising, corporate communications and public affairs efforts produced by gaming industry professionals during the past year.

Awards will be given in 15 categories covering a wide variety of marketing and communications media, such as direct mail, television, print, outdoor and radio advertising, communications campaigns, annual reports, social media and digital and mobile marketing. The deadline for entering is July 1, so download the Call for Entries and get started on your submissions today.

Companies involved in the casino, lottery or pari-mutel industries, including operators, equipment manufacturers, suppliers and vendors, tribal/government agencies, and associations, are eligible to submit entries.  Winners in each category will be honored with the Gaming Voice award at an industrywide awards ceremony at Global Gaming Expo on September 25 in Las Vegas. For more information on the AGA Communications Awards, contact Brian Lehman.

Don’t miss your chance to be honored as the cream of the gaming communications crop with this year’s Communications Awards!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Illustrating the Impact of the Commercial Gaming Industry

Holly Wetzel, Vice President of Communications, American Gaming Association

FACT: The economic impact of the commercial gaming industry is equivalent to 1 percent of the U.S. gross domestic product.

Surprised? It’s true! Commercial casinos provide jobs, tax revenues, business opportunities for suppliers and a diverse array of entertainment options for our customers. When you factor in how casinos impact the supply chain and employee spending trickles down through the economy, the positive impact of our business spreads well beyond our casino walls.

To learn more, check out the AGA’s new two-minute video “illustrating” the economic impact of commercial casinos:

Share this video and help spread the word about how commercial casinos help the economy.  And be on the lookout for more videos coming from the AGA throughout the year to help educate key stakeholders about our business. 

Friday, May 10, 2013

Examining the Future of Gaming

Brian Lehman, Communications Manager, American Gaming Association

This week, the American Gaming Association (AGA) released the 2013 State of the States: The AGA Survey of Casino Entertainment, and this year’s edition of the report, as usual, contains a comprehensive look at national and state-by-state economic impacts of the commercial casino industry, including gross gaming revenue, gaming tax contributions, employment and wages.

Another popular feature of the annual survey is public opinion polling that delves into the gambling habits and attitudes of casino visitors and the general public. This year, we took a closer look at young adult casino visitors with a survey of 300 past-year casino visitors age 21-35. Visitors are paramount to the success of the industry, and taking a look at this younger adult demographic allows us to get a glimpse of what casino companies may be offering in the future.

On the whole, the polling results show similar overall gambling habits for this younger cohort when compared to those of the general visitor population. However, some notable differences include the fact that young adults have the highest rate (39 percent) of casino visitation compared to other age groups. In addition to visiting casinos at a higher rate, young adult casino-goers are more likely to come back, as 90 percent said they plan to return to a casino in the next year (compared with 79 percent of the general population of casino-goers who said the same). Young adult visitors don’t just gamble in casinos, they also are more likely to participate in other forms of gambling like casual betting with friends, playing poker or gambling on the Internet.

When it comes to their activities during casino visits, young adult patrons are more likely to utilize all categories of non-gaming amenities such as dining, shopping or live entertainment. The games they like to play also differ somewhat, and while slot machines are their favorite games (just like the general population of visitors), table games are more popular among this age group, and young adult visitors are more likely to take part in a variety of different games during the course of a single visit.

All of this information and more is available in the State of the States report. Check it out and take a deep dive into the present and future of the commercial casino industry.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Around the World with Global Gaming Women

By Keli Elkins, Vice President of Industry Relations, American Gaming Association

Spring is an exciting time for the industry with conferences and trade shows scheduled around the globe. Global Gaming Women (GGW) is thrilled to be partnering with many event organizers to host our own programs at each. In fact, during the first week of May, you’ll find GGW at events from Panama all the way to Montreal.

On Tuesday, May 7, Southern Gaming Summit will host a GGW Luncheon in Gulfport, Miss. as part of the kick-off to their annual proceedings. At Island View Casino, AGA Senior Vice President and Executive Director Judy Patterson will moderate a top-notch panel of female gaming executives during a live take on GGW’s popular Coffee Break video series. Confirmed panelists include: June DeHart, partner, Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLC; Holly Gagnon, CEO, Pearl River Resorts; Elaine Hodgson, CEO and president, Incredible Technologies, Inc.; Cathy MacKenzie, vice president and general counsel, Island View Casino; Sheila Morago, executive director, Oklahoma Indian Gaming Association; and Suszanne Trout, CMO, Rush Street Gaming.

Later that week, GGW looks forward to engaging several new audiences when it hosts events for the first time in Latin America and Canada. Monografie and Gaming Laboratories International (GLI) will sponsor a GGW Luncheon at the SAGSE Central America & Caribbean event in Panama on Thursday, May 9. Marta Sanchez of Covey Consulting will be the featured speaker. The following day, on Friday, May 10, GGW will join with the International Masters of Gaming Law (IMGL) for a GGW Breakfast at the IMGL Spring Conference in Montreal.

Finally, at the end of the month, G2E will host GGW during G2E Asia in Macau. The breakfast event on May 23 will feature speed mentoring roundtables facilitated by experienced gaming executives from the region.

Do not miss out on the growing calendar of GGW events – join our mailing list today at, where you also can register or find out more about all of the programs mentioned above. We look forward to seeing you at GGW events this spring!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

An Exciting Lineup for the 14th Annual NCRG Conference on Gambling and Addiction

By Amy Kugler, communications and outreach manager for the National Center for Responsible Gaming

This is the time each year that I get most excited about the many incredible speakers that are on the docket for the NCRG Conference on Gambling and Addiction. This event co-locates each year with G2E, allowing industry members, regulators, academics, researchers and clinicians the opportunity to continue discussing practical applications of the latest research on gambling disorders and responsible gaming.

Mark your calendars and join us for the 14th annual NCRG Conference on Gambling and Addiction September 22-24 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center. This year’s conference will examine how the Affordable Care Act and the American Psychiatric Association’s newly revised diagnostic guide – the highly anticipated DSM-5 – will impact the field of gambling disorders and addiction as a whole. Here are some of the sessions and topics that we’re looking forward to examining:

  • Behind the Screen: Characteristics of Internet Gamblers Who Trigger Responsible Gaming Interventions – Dr. Heather Gray from the Division on Addiction, Cambridge Health Alliance will present about her recent studies that examine what responsible gaming interventions can tell us about Internet gamblers with potential problems.
  • Lessons for the Effective Promotion of Responsible Gaming: leaders with expertise in cause-related marketing campaigns will lead a discussion of some potential ways to expand the communication of some of the industry’s responsible gaming programs.
  • The Evolving Definition of Pathological Gambling and Related Disorders – William Narrow, director of research for the committee that revised the DSM-5, will discuss the changes in the diagnostic criteria for gambling disorders and how those revisions may impact key stakeholders.
We also are putting together a town hall meeting for gaming regulators to bring them face-to-face with the leading scientists on responsible gaming issues, to open a dialogue about the next frontier of research on this issue.

We hope you’ll join us for this year’s NCRG Conference! For more information, visit

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

An Industry of Giving

By Holly Wetzel, VP of Communications, American Gaming Association

Did you know that commercial gaming industry employees contribute nearly 300,000 volunteer hours a year? That data comes from a new report on industry giving and volunteering coming soon from the American Gaming Association, and I think it’s a pretty impressive figure. According to the report, in 2012 more than 36,000 industry employees participated in volunteer events that served more than 2,000 organizations.

The AGA conducted the survey of industry philanthropic contributions as part of its annual “All In” campaign to highlight the corporate social responsibility efforts of the commercial gaming industry. The full report will be released next week during National Volunteer Week, and gaming employees across the country will be participating in a host of volunteer activities to help their communities.

Here’s just a taste of what’s planned for next week:

·      Aristocrat Technologies has several staff volunteer events planned next week in Las Vegas, including building wooden toys for Toys4Smiles, assembling food and toiletry bags for seniors at Helping Hands, and organizing rooms and helping with spring cleaning at Street Teens.

Every Ameristar casino across the country will be hosting volunteer activities for employees. Examples include Ameristar Black Hawk, where employees will help put on the 2013 Craig Hospital Bowling Tournament. The corporate office in Las Vegas will help run an eyeglass donation drive in conjunction with the local Lion’s Club.

Isle of Capri properties also are getting in on the volunteer action. Isle of Capri Lake Charles employees will help build houses with Habitat for Humanity and host a resident birthday party at the local Gardens Assisted Living Center, among other activities.

Isle of Capri Boonville has big plans as well. Examples of planned activities include food prep at the Food Bank for Central and Northeast Missouri, and cleaning, general maintenance and storm cleanup at Columbia Second Chance.

MGM Resorts International employees in Las Vegas will be working at the Desert Wildlife Refuge to plant native trees, flowers and perform grounds cleanup.

In addition to these activities, the AGA will use National Volunteer Week to celebrate some of the most outstanding employee volunteers throughout the national gaming industry. Companies throughout the industry nominated Employee Volunteer All Stars, and the stories of our winners and finalists will be featured in a special section of the AGA website. I encourage you to check out their inspiring stories next week at  Take some time this month to learn more about your own company’s volunteer programs, and think about how you can get involved. The gaming industry truly is an industry of giving – when we all work together, the impact we can make is truly noteworthy.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

What Do College Basketball and College Gambling Have in Common?

By Amy Kugler, Communications and Outreach Manager for the National Center for Responsible Gaming

Even though they didn’t advance to the championship game, I was ecstatic to cheer for my hometown team, the Wichita State University Shockers, in the NCAA Final Four Men’s Basketball tournament. College students around the country also enjoy getting in on the March Madness action by filling out a bracket – and maybe even placing a wager on a game. Research shows that 75 percent of college students gambled in the past year. Many college students assume gambling is a risk-free activity, but research has shown that for about 6 percent of the population, gambling for fun could turn into a serious problem.

To help students, university administrators, campus mental health professionals and parents address gambling and gambling-related harms on college campuses, the National Center for Responsible Gaming (NCRG) developed The website brings together the latest research and best practices in responsible gaming and the field of addiction awareness and prevention. also provides free resources, fact sheets, presentations and other useful program materials that allow universities to address this issue in a way best suited to the needs of each campus.

The NCRG also has an interactive quiz on that explains both the research on college gambling and the trivia behind the NCAA basketball tournaments. You might even learn a few key research facts and trivia to use during watch parties for next year’s tournament.

Even though the tournament is over, make sure to take the interactive quiz, visit and pass the information along to any college students or their parents.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Players Club debuts at G2E Asia

By Mike Johnson, Director of Sales & Industry Development

Several years ago we at Reed Exhibitions restructured some of our marketing departments to create a new “Targeted Attendee Program,” or “TAP” for short, which is essentially a division responsible for recruiting the top buyers our exhibitors want to see at our events. That program within the G2E portfolio is called “Players Club,” and we’re very excited to be implementing that winning philosophy at G2E Asia next month in Macau. 

Through a series of ongoing conversations with our exhibiting customers, as well as independent research, we have been hitting the road throughout the year meeting with a variety of casino mangers in various markets to promote our content.  I myself will be leaving for another trip to Macau next Friday, and then I’ll be going on to the Philippines to meet with senior management from a variety of properties, including the new Solaire resort which just opened in Manila, as well as our friends at PAGCOR.  

I’m really looking forward to meeting with various managers responsible for table games, electric games, and security/surveillance which comprises the makeup of the Players Club and in turn the major product categories represented on the G2E show floors. 

We’re also visiting properties in Singapore, Malaysia, Korea, Cambodia, Laos, and of course Macau which we frequent often via our nearby offices in Hong Kong and Shenzhen. This extensive ongoing dialogue with our exhibiting companies and strategic visitors is paramount in efforts to provide a G2E Asia event with unmatched business development opportunities. We’re a company that produces face-to-face meetings for industry professionals, and the best way to facilitate that type of business is for us to meet face to face with the ones we serve. I’m looking forward to seeing many of them soon!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Connecting with Women in the Tribal Gaming Sector

By Keli Elkins, Vice President of Industry Relations, American Gaming Association (AGA)

Are you a woman working in the Indian Gaming segment? Have you heard about Global Gaming Women? 

Over the last several months, the American Gaming Association's (AGA) Global Gaming Women (GGW) initiative has made a concerted effort to expand its outreach to the industry's tribal market. This effort began last year during G2E with the filming of several Indian Gaming leaders for the Coffee Break video series, which was discussed by Holly Wetzel in her post last week. 

Many of these leaders have gone on to serve as the chairs of GGW’s new tribal committee. The committee's first priority was to organize an event at Indian Gaming 2013. It was our second GGW event in as many years at that show thanks to the hard work of Kate Spilde and the support of our annual event sponsor, the Sycuan Institute of Tribal Gaming at San Diego State University. 

The committee brought together an amazing group of women to lead the breakfast discussion about building successful mentorships, including Libby Francisco, COO of Desert Diamond Casinos, Valerie Diaz, sales manager of international and specialty markets at Casino Del Sol, President Diane Enos of the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community and Valerie Spicer, executive director of the Arizona Indian Gaming Association. 

More than 60 attendees were inspired by the panel’s discussion on mentorship, especially by their encouraging words about approaching female leaders in this segment. As one panelist put it, “We’re here. We’re approachable. We want to be mentors. If we were too busy we wouldn’t make time for events like these.” 

The committee hopes to build on the momentum of this successful event with additional GGW gatherings at regional Indian Gaming shows throughout 2013. They also intend to work with GGW to identify additional female leaders from this sector for the Coffee Break series. Finally, as we approach the launch of GGW’s Global Gaming Network for online mentorship, the tribal committee will help identify mentors and market the tool to rising female leaders. 

If you are interested in learning more about this committee or its activities, please visit for more information. If you’re a female leader working in the Indian Gaming sector and interested in becoming more involved in any of the aforementioned projects, please contact me directly to begin a conversation. We look forward to seeing you at GGW events throughout 2013!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

A Little Advice Straight from the Top

By Holly Wetzel, Vice President of Communications, American Gaming Association

I don’t know about you, but I’m often inspired to do my best work after talking with new people I meet in the industry. There are so many brilliant people working in and around gaming, and hearing how others address unique challenges and find success helps me generate new ideas and hone my own approach to my career and day-to-day business tasks.

Unfortunately, due to the myriad demands we all have on our time, these opportunities to learn from one another are sometimes few and far between. So, how can we glean knowledge and insight from our peers when meeting face-to-face isn’t always an option? We developed the “Coffee Break” video series, a program of Global Gaming Women, with this challenge squarely in mind.

“Coffee Break” brings together women leaders from throughout the global industry to offer their personal insights on business, leadership and career issues. The videos are purposefully short – most are one minute or less – and they feature advice and leadership strategies applicable not just to women, but to anyone working in the modern gaming industry.

Currently, there are 11 different leaders featured on “Coffee Break”, ranging from the CEO of a major commercial gaming company to the COO of a tribal gaming enterprise and the general counsel of a major gaming manufacturer. We’re adding new videos all the time, giving viewers a sampling of perspectives from every corner of our business.

I encourage everyone to visit the “Coffee Break” site to check out the videos and gain from the expertise showcased there. It’s a testament to the strength of the women in our business, and a one-of-a-kind opportunity to get inside the heads of some of gaming’s brightest leaders.

If we can’t always meet face-to-face to get advice and insight from one another, surely this is the next best thing. I hope this series will inspire you like it does me. After all, it never hurts to get advice straight from the top!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Welcome New Exhibitors to G2E Asia 2013

By See Lay Eng , Asst. Vice President G2E Asia

I’m excited to announce that, alongside the many exhibitors who will make their highly anticipated return to the event, we will also welcome a long list of brand new exhibitors to the G2E Asia show floor!

We have many first-time exhibitors that will be showcasing gaming solutions from across a wide range of segments.  What we love about welcoming so many new exhibitors is that we can bring you new innovations and ideas for your business. The companies represent architecture construction and design, computer hardware, consultants, entertainment & hospitality, facilities / maintenance, gaming equipment, gaming software and systems, iGaming, retail, services and video gaming machines.

I welcome you to visit and meet with these new exhibitors:

  • Ace Creation Technology System Co. Ltd
  • Blue Power Technology (HK) Limited
  • Chetu, Inc.
  • EverFocus Electronics Corporation
  • Exact Office Automation Limited
  • Extreme Networks Pte Ltd
  • Flexo Gaming
  • Global Bet Virtual Sports
  • Haifa Holding Limited
  • Haui I Electronics Co., Ltd.
  • Intelligent Gaming Ltd
  • Merkur Gaming GmbH
  • Multi-Tech (China) Telecom System
  • Shun An Da Trade Company
  • Su-Pack Technology Enterprise
  • Synectic Systems Asia Pte Ltd.
  • TP Software Company Ltd.

These companies are looking forward to joining the growing ranks of G2E Asia 2013 exhibitors and showcasing their offerings to the Asia-Pacific gaming industry for the first time.

I look forward to seeing you soon at G2E Asia.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

G2E Asia 2013 Show Floor—Bigger than Ever and New Layout

By Mike Johnson, Director of Sales & Industry Development

Hi Everyone, quick update from G2E Asia. With our sales team still hard at work recruiting the industry’s finest manufacturers, suppliers and service providers, I’m pleased to report that this year’s G2E Asia show will officially be our largest in recent years. Last year we proudly showcased 130 companies for a little over 5,959 sq. meters of exhibit space, and this year we’ve already confirmed 6,562 sq. meters of space and still have eight weeks left in the show cycle.

G2E Asia 2013 floor plan

As I’ve also mentioned in prior postings, not only will this year’s show be dramatically larger, it will also feature a brand new layout designed to enhance navigation, making all companies much easier to find. And, we’ll soon be launching our new G2E Asia Mobile App which will make navigating the show and locating products a breeze.

The conference team is also hard at work confirming the last of our speakers whom will be posted to our web site shortly. As a teaser, I’m very excited to announce our first ever “CFO Roundtable” session featuring Hubert Wang from MGM Macau, Bob McBain from SJM, Ben Toh from Sands China, and Bob Drake from Galaxy. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear from these elite industry leaders!

I’ll continue to keep you posted as the show ramps up, and as always feel free to email me at if there is anything I can answer for you prior to the show.


Thursday, March 14, 2013

At G2E Asia 2013, iGaming, Security & Surveillance Pavilions Showcase Latest Trends for Casino

By See Lay Eng , Asst. Vice President G2E Asia

As the Assistant Vice President of G2E Asia, it is my pleasure to kick off a series of blogs on this year’s G2E Asia event.

One of the things that distinguishes the G2E Asia brand across the continent is that we are consistent where we need to be and fluid where changes need to be made based on what the industry asks us.

Right now, we’re putting the final touches on this year’s event that promises to bring together the top professionals on the buyer and supply side of gaming, not just from Asia, but from across the world.

With respect to what’s new this year, we’ve taken note of emerging trends and technologies, and added more elements to the show. Two areas of particular note - iGaming and Security & Surveillance – will now have prominent features on-site, in the form of themed pavilions. 

At the outset of iGaming a little over a decade ago, few would have predicted that it would become the massive growth sector it represents today, attracting tens of millions of players worldwide. Through the new iGaming Pavilion, we want professionals from this booming sector to easily and quickly be able to find the right partners and new products in Asia. The iGaming pavilion at G2E Asia 2013 will host consultancy service providers and software providers, as well as suppliers of online/mobile games, fraud protection agents, payment solution providers, and more

In contrast to iGaming, security and surveillance has always been integral to running successful gaming operations.  This year, the Security & Surveillance pavilion will highlight the technological innovations changing the way casino operators approach the business of gaming in offline and online operations. Part of the pavilion will be a series of highly engaging workshops, where the most cutting edge product innovations in Asia will be displayed and demonstrated.  Among the featured products will be CCTV, access control, monitoring solutions, video systems, alarms, security software and more.  

I invite everyone in the industry who is looking to experience gaming in Asia to join us May 21, when G2E Asia 2013 kicks off. For more information, please visit our Web site at

I look forward to seeing you there.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Ultra Lounge Fashion Show – Designer Interviews

By Kimberlie I. Leon, Director of Marketing

This year we went behind the scenes to get an insider’s perspective from the CINTAS fashion designers. It was a great new addition to carve out some time to speak with the designers and how they get their inspiration to create new looks. Listen to what they had to say here…

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Building Partnerships to Address Responsible Gaming

By Amy Kugler,  NCRG Communications and Outreach Manager

It is no secret that successful partnerships are the key to growing any business, whether it is a non-profit entity or a for-profit business. An author of a recent Harvard Business Review blog article explained that every company is responsible for creating a shared value and building partnerships, regardless of industry or business model.

At the National Center for Responsible Gaming (NCRG), we place a huge emphasis on developing partnerships toward a common goal, and those essential collaborations help us to fulfill our mission. The NCRG’s ambitious agenda for 2013 is an example of striving to build partnerships across all sectors to increase awareness and understanding of gambling disorders and responsible gaming.

We’re proud of the way that we partner with innovative researchers to provide almost $1 million in research funding for 2013. Our donors also have been long-standing partners and, since our beginning in 1996, they have committed more than $25 million to fund this cutting-edge research and public education programs that are making an impact.

Beyond the NCRG’s research funding opportunities, our public education and outreach programs are expanding greatly due to incredible regional and national partners who are invested in addressing this issue. Here are some upcoming opportunities to join us as NCRG staff and leading experts travel the country and create new resources:

  • NCRG Webinar Series, presented in conjunction with the G2E Online Center: Feb. 8 and Apr. 24. More dates to be announced.
  •  The NCRG will host its seventh Annual Education Summit on March 14-15 in Chicago, Ill., and will announce the next awardees for the NCRG Centers of Excellence in Gambling Research.
  • NCRG Treatment Provider Workshops will be hosted in Seattle, Wash., on Apr. 2 in partnership with the Evergreen Council on Problem Gambling. Additional partners and sessions in Kansas City, Mo.; Denver, Colo.; Baton Rouge, La.; and Reno, Nev., will be announced throughout the year.

None of these programs, research grants and resources are possible without stellar collaborators, and we are incredibly grateful for the dedication of the NCRG’s donors and partners, ranging from national public health organizations to local clinicians. If you’d like to work with the NCRG on any of these upcoming programs, please let me know!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

G2E & G2E Asia Conference Updates 2013

By Mike Johnson, Director of Sales & Industry Development

A lot of work is underway for both the G2E and G2E Asia conferences. For Asia, we’re putting the final touches on this year’s program in Macau which will be coming online in the next week. This year’s agenda will again feature our popular Global Markets Forum program on day 1, analyzing a series of existing and emerging/expanding markets in the Asia Pacific region. Look for dedicated sessions on Taiwan and the Philippines, as well as a two part series on Macau discussing the remaining Cotai projects as well as Henquin island.  In the core program on days 2 and 3, we’ll feature a number of general sessions including an analysis of the current Chinese consumer, a discussion of VIP vs. mass market gaming and establishing a healthy mix, a two part series on gaming technology innovations, and much more. Overall I’d like to thank our G2EAsia Conference Advisory Board for their efforts in helping to craft this year’s topics. We are very grateful for their time and guidance.

For the G2E Las Vegas conference, we just held our first Conference Advisory Board meeting of the year last week in Las Vegas which went very well. We talked a lot about “Futurism” which is an early potential angle for this year’s “Insights on Operations” program on the final day of the show. In the coming week’s we’ll be having detailed discussions with the members of each track committee to discuss the major trends happening in each segment of the gaming industry. I’ll keep you posted here as things come together, and of course, if you have any suggestions please always feel free to email me at Until then, be well!

Code of Conduct Anniversary

By Brian Lehman, AGA Communications Manager

Welcome to the G2E blog – you may have gotten here via a link from Twitter or Facebook. Ten years ago, if I had written the same sentence it wouldn’t have made sense because Twitter and Facebook hadn’t been created yet and the term “blog” hadn’t reached the level of cultural saturation that it has today.

A lot can change in a decade, as evidenced by the rapid development of new communications and information technology. That is why in conjunction with the 10th anniversary of the adoption of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Gaming, the AGA released an updated version of the Code.  last week. The new Code acknowledges that the commercial casino industry is now marketing to customers via Internet and email communications and social media platforms, and addresses new technology and how it changes the way gaming companies interact with customers.

When it was adopted in 2003, the Code of Conduct was the first document of its kind, creating a consistent, industrywide approach to responsible gaming across all of the AGA’s member companies. It is a pledge to employees, patrons and the public to promote responsible gaming in every aspect of the casino business—including employee training, the prevention of underage gambling, responsible alcohol service, and responsible marketing and advertising.  

Gaming companies across the country used the anniversary as a chance to remind employees, patrons and the public about their commitment to responsible gaming. The National Center for Responsible Gaming also helped promote the anniversary through a front page story in the most recent issue of Responsible GamingQuarterly.

For all the latest AGA and industry news, including updates about online poker legislation, visit the AGA website, follow the AGA on Twitter or “like” us on Facebook.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Al Zajic on Casino Security & Surveillance

By Mike Johnson, Director of Sales & Industry Development

Check out this interview from G2E 2012 with frequent speaker and G2E Conference Advisory Board member, Al Zajic, who shares a bit about what’s happening in casino security and surveillance. Al is an independent, Nevada-licensed security consultant with more than 35 years of security industry experience. He’s also a certified protection professional with ASIS International and a certified surveillance professional with the International Association of Certified Surveillance Professionals. Enjoy.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

NCRG Grant Funding

By Judy Patterson, Senior Vice President and Executive Director, American Gaming Association (AGA)

The gaming industry is, unfortunately, accustomed to reading negative media stories that all too often rely on outdated or disproven research—or junk science—to make their case.  A recent story in the New York Times claiming that slot machines cause gambling addiction is yet another example.  Four decades of experience with a dramatic increase in the number of slots but no corresponding increase in the rate of pathological gambling (consistently 1 percent) is apparently not evidence enough.  Nor is a recent University of Iowa study reaffirming earlier research by Harvard Medical School and other major institutions.

What is true is how seriously the industry takes the issue of pathological gambling.  As one example of that, the National Center for Responsible Gaming (NCRG), the only national organization exclusively devoted to funding such research and the American Gaming Association’s affiliated charity, just announced it has allocated nearly $1 million in grants for 2013 to study gambling disorders.  These grants range in size from $1,500 travel grants to $25,000 seed grants to $75,000 large grants.  In addition, for the first time the NCRG is offering an Addiction Fellowship for two years that will help prepare qualified individuals for careers that could have a significant impact on the understanding and treatment of gambling disorders.  All of this activity is under the direction of a Scientific Advisory Board comprised of leading scientists who follow the National Institutes of Health criteria for scientific merit.

This organization, and the body of work it has supported, has taught us much of what we know about the field of gambling disorders.  Among the numerous findings are:  promising treatments for gambling disorders;  more evidence for the role of genetics in the development of the disorder;  the first national survey of gambling on college campuses; and a model for evaluating self-exclusion and treatment programs.
To learn more about the NCRG grants program and the impact of research funded by the NCRG, visit

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Highlights from the 2012 Ultra Lounge Fashion Show

By Kimberlie I. Leon, Director of Marketing

One of my favorite parts of the show each year is the Ultra Lounge Uniform Fashion Show sponsored by CINTAS. I love to see the innovative and fashion-forward uniforms that are being unveiled. And I also get a kick out of watching the audience respond with such awe as the models make their way down the catwalk!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Lessons on Leadership

By Holly Wetzel, VP of Communications American Gaming Association (AGA)

Happy New Year! With January suddenly well underway, one of my resolutions is to grow as a leader in 2013 – a goal I’m sure I share with many of my colleagues in the gaming industry.

Now, as most readers likely are aware, the AGA announced this week that Frank Fahrenkopf, president and CEO of the organization since its inception in 1995, is stepping down from his position at the end of June. Thinking about my resolution, it strikes me there are many lessons to be taken from Frank’s long career that can help me and others become better leaders in 2013 and beyond:

Embody Integrity—Frank is as straight a shooter as you’ll ever meet, and his honesty and integrity have made him one of the most respected leaders in Washington, D.C. and throughout the global gaming industry.
The lesson: Be honest ALWAYS. Hold yourself to a higher standard, and expect the same of your employees. It’s a lot easier to get your employees to buy into your vision and succeed when you walk the walk first. Also, people want to do business with folks they know they can trust.

Seek Collaboration—Frank’s political career has been marked by his ability to reach across the aisle and collaborate with leaders from both sides of the political spectrum. As head of the AGA, he’s honed that skill in bringing together competing interests to achieve common industry goals.
The lesson: Every viewpoint is valuable, and there’s always common ground to be found. When you find it, leverage it, and then use the talents of the group to achieve something great. Also, there’s more than one right way to do things, and always respect your opponent—they just might become an ally down the road. 

Nurture Talent—Frank has an uncanny ability to indentify his employees’ strengths and to let those talents flourish to the greater benefit of the individual and the organization. He provides seasoned guidance and creates leadership opportunities so his employees can succeed.
The lesson: Be a good teacher, but know when to step back and let your employees lead the way. Recognize accomplishment—even a simple “great job!” can serve as a powerful motivator. Provide constructive feedback and remember that employees want to grow—find ways to help them do it.

Have a Sense of Humor – Anyone who’s spent time with Frank knows he loves a good story and is quick with a joke. Work is serious business, and we accomplish a great deal at the AGA, but we’re never too busy to have a little fun.
The lesson: When you create a work environment where your employees are happy, comfortable and often laughing (sometimes even at you!), it’s amazing the level of success you can achieve. Happy employees mean better ideas, better collaboration and a better end product.

These are just some of the lessons I’ve taken from Frank over the years. I’ll be keeping them in mind as I endeavor to become a better leader in 2013. Best of luck to everyone keeping YOUR resolutions, and happy new year!

Recommended links:  G2E 2012 Welcome Remarks from Frank J. Fahrenkopf, Jr.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

IGT's Staci Alonso talks to G2E TV!

By Mike Carlucci, Director of Strategic Accounts

At G2E 2012, IGT was busy unveiling a number of new slot machines from Dolly Parton’s 9 to 5 to CSI and Family Guy. They did a great job of engaging our attendees.