June 16, 2023 3 min read


Massachusetts Gaming Commission Executive Director Announces Amicable Departure

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission executive director has decided to bid farewell to the regulator effective July 14

Massachusetts’ Gaming Commission (MGC) will say goodbye to executive director Karen Wells on July 14, the last day when the lead will carry the official title. Wells has announced she would be stepping down from the position at the end of a long and eventful decade spent at the wheel. 

A Friendly Closure 

The departure was most likely an amicable one, as expressed by the gushing praises that both Wells and the commission’s chair, Cathy Judd-Stein, offered to one another, as marked in the agency’s official statement regarding the news.

Wells, who received the unanimous vote to become the new executive director from MGC’s five commissioners on September 10, 2020, was described as “the model of a leader” by Judd-Stein. 

The chair, who spoke on behalf of fellow commissioners, also thanked Karen “for her contributions to the MGC over her ten years of service and for the leadership she has provided as executive director.” The regulator’s effectiveness, added Judd-Stein, was “a direct reflection of Karen’s efforts and her ability to build, motivate and direct the MGC team.” 

While getting ready to announce the process that would help them choose their new executive director at the end of a series of upcoming public meetings, the agency used the voice of its chair to praise Wells’ “strategic abilities and steady presence.” 

These, according to Judd-Stein, allowed the commission to build a sports betting industry fully committed to protecting consumers. At the start of June, the MGC assessed if the marketing tactics and language used by a Barstool promotion violated the state’s current regulations. 

Wells, “Forever Thankful for the Support”

During the same public statement, Wells took the opportunity to speak about the last ten years she “had the privilege of working” for the MGC, initially as director of the Investigations and Enforcement Bureau, which is the agency’s largest department, and as executive director over the last three years. 

Describing the agency’s current core responsibilities as “operating smoothly,” Wells expressed confidence in the agency’s ability to continue its excellent work. She also said she will be “forever thankful for the support” received from commissioners, colleagues, and licensees. 

At the start of the year, prior to the launch of the market, the MGC voted in favor of including extra additions to the sports betting catalog of events that consumers would be allowed to wager on. 

After finishing her master's in publishing and writing, Melanie began her career as an online editor for a large gaming blog and has now transitioned over towards the iGaming industry. She helps to ensure that our news pieces are written to the highest standard possible under the guidance of senior management.

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