Paul Burns, president & CEO of the Canadian Gaming Association, was inducted into the SBC’s Sports Betting Hall of Fame, the first Canadian to receive the honor.
The induction was part of the SBC Summit North America 2022 Wednesday at Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
The Hall of Fame was launched in 2016 to recognize leaders who have contributed a great deal to the industry over the course of their careers and leaving a lasting legacy.
Everyone following the rapid growth of the legal, regulated Ontario sports betting and online casino markets has Burns to thank.
It was in large part to Burns’ work that led to changes in the criminal code last summer permitting single event wagering in Canada, through to the official launch of the Ontario market April 4.
Ontario Market is Growing
As of Thursday, there were 31 sports betting and gambling websites approved and operating in the Ontario online casino and sports betting markets.
“It was an honor to be recognized and I am humbled to be inducted with some true legends of the sports betting industry,” Burns told OntarioBets.com. “My work to pursue the passage of the criminal code amendment to permit single event wagering in Canada will allow Canada’s gaming industry to grow and develop its own legal and regulated industry.
“We are seeing the potential of the sports betting market in these early days of the Ontario regulated online market.”
The Hall of Fame Class
Sandy Drozd, vice president, US Bookmaking, Vincent Magliulo, VP of strategic partnerships and marketing with VSiN, and Chris Andrews, sportsbook director at South Point Hotel, Casino & Spa joined Burns as Hall of Fame Inductees.
“I’m very excited that Paul got the recognition he so richly deserves with his induction into SBC’s Sports Betting Hall of Fame,” said Amanda Brewer, country manager Canada forKindred Group (Unibet), who also worked with Burns at the CGA. “His unwavering determination in changing our criminal code last year single-handedly altered the sports betting landscape for Canadians and allowed Ontario’s iGaming market to open with the best chance of achieving a high level of channelization. As an industry, we are very lucky to have him.”