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The General Commercial Gaming Regulatory Authority has started to build its team: A gaming co-ordinator from the Netherlands, a head of investigations from Missouri and a chairman from Vegas.

The UAE’s newly-formed gaming commission has hired its head of investigations: A recently retired U.S. lieutenant who had led the Gaming Division of the Missouri State Highway Patrol. Ed Aylward shared on his Linkedin on Monday that he will join the General Commercial Gaming Regulatory Authority (GCGRA).

Aylward retired from the Missouri State Highway Patrol in 2022 after three decades. He has a master’s degree in criminal justice administration from Central Missouri State University.

His role in Missouri involved looking into the suitability of licensees, suppliers and vendors, and conducting background checks. The GCGRA is the sole entity able to regulate, license, monitor and supervise gaming in the United Arab Emirates.

The Middle East state has yet to use the word “casino” or “gambling” anywhere in its announcement of the GCGRA. It refers to “gaming facilities” and “gaming activities.”

Over the past week, the GCGRA has been quietly building up its team, including its head of talent management and acquisition, and a gaming co-ordinator. Ian Tannock takes on the co-ordinator role, previously head of responsible gaming at an online casino firm in the Netherlands.

You can see the GCGRA LinkedIn page here.

Casino Bosses in GCGRA Leadership

The GCGRA is led by Kevin Mullally as CEO, with a board of directors being chaired by Jim Murren.

Mullally was previously with New Jersey’s Gaming Laboratories International, a company that specializes in testing and certifying gaming equipment. Mullally was its VP of government relations and general counsel for a decade. He has also spent 12 years with the Missouri Gaming Commission.

Murren is the former chairman and CEO of MGM Resorts, a role he held from 2008 to 2020. He was also chairman of the American Gaming Association from 2014 to 2017.

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