Major Peter J. O'Connell Lottery Industry Lifetime Achievement Award Ceremony March 21, 1:30 pm 2012 at SMART-Tech 2012, Helmsley Park Lane Hotel, New York City
Gary Grief, Executive Director, Texas Lottery
Tom Shaheen, Executive Vice President, Linq3
Major Peter J. O'Connell Lottery Industry Lifetime Achievement Award
GARY GRIEF, Executive Director, Texas Lottery Commission
Gary Grief was appointed Executive Director of the Texas Lottery Commission in March 2010, overseeing a $4 billion enterprise whose mission is to generate revenue for public education and other good causes in the State of Texas.
Gary has been an integral part of the success of the Texas Lottery Commission since its inception. Appointed in 1991 by the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts to the original eight-member Lottery Task Force, Gary was assigned to research and launch the Texas Lottery. Gary assumed the role of Statewide Manager of Claim Centers in 1992, overseeing 24 field offices statewide. Serving in this role until 1997, Gary then accepted the position of Director of Lottery Operations. While serving as Director of Lottery Operations, Gary was the recipient of the 2002 "Powers Award" for Performance Excellence in Lottery Operations by the National Association of State and Provincial Lotteries (NASPL). This award is presented annually to the outstanding performers in the North American lottery industry.
Between 2002 and 2010, Gary served as Acting Executive Director for three separate terms, and as Deputy Executive Director during the periods when not serving as Acting Executive Director. In recent years, Gary has taken on a leadership role not just for the Texas Lottery but in national lottery industry initiatives as well.
In 2008, Gary actively participated in discussions between the Multi-State Lottery Association (MUSL) and the Mega Millions group to reach an agreement on cross-selling both Powerball and Mega Millions. These talks came to fruition in January of 2010 when the majority of US lottery jurisdictions began selling both products. For Texas, Powerball has generated more than $80 million in revenue for the Foundation School Fund since that time.
Assuming the Lead Director position for Mega Millions in September 2010, Gary assisted in discussions with MUSL (Powerball) regarding a potential price increase for Powerball. Such an agreement was reached in 2011 and the Powerball price point was changed to $2 in January 2012. Early recent results indicate that this change will dramatically increase Powerball revenue in Texas.
Gary also led the Texas Lottery Commission through its recent Lottery Operator procurement process, the most significant procurement undertaken by the agency since lottery start-up. As the first Texas Lottery Executive Director to actively participate in every step of the procurement process, Gary worked closely with the TLC Chairman to successfully navigate several significant challenges during this procurement, inherent of the extremely competitive nature of the lottery industry. GTECH was announced as the apparent successful proposer in late 2010.
Gary has also been an active participant and leader in the National Association of State and Provincial Lotteries (NASPL). Initially elected as Region IV Director of NASPL in October 2008, he has since been appointed and served as NASPL Secretary and, most recently, elected and currently serving as 2nd Vice President. Gary also serves as the NASPL Accounting Subcommittee Chairman, responsible for the annual personal development seminars for lottery industry finance and accounting professionals.
Under Gary’s leadership, the Texas Lottery has contributed more than $1 billion annually since 2004 to the State of Texas. A native Texan, Gary is a graduate of the University of Texas at the Permian Basin where he earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration.
Tom Shaheen, Executive Vice President, Linq3
Tom Shaheen began his 24-year lottery career in 1987 as a Sales Representative with the Florida Lottery. He remained with the Florida Lottery for 4 ½ years holding positions as Warehouse Manager, Sales Manager, and District Manager. In 1992 he was hired by the Texas Lottery as part of their start-up team, serving as Field Service Supervisor. As Field Supervisor, Tom oversaw the operation of ten district offices operated by the Online Gaming Vendor. Within seven months he was promoted to Assistant Marketing Manager.
Tom moved on in 1993 to become part of the Georgia Lottery start-up, fulfilling the role of Vice President of Sales. During his tenure with the Georgia Lottery he was promoted to Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing, and then Executive Vice President. “Tom was instrumental in the start-up and growth of the Georgia Lottery,” states then CEO, Rebecca Paul Hargrove. “As an example, as overseer of instant tickets, instant sales grew from $7 million per week to a high of $21 million per week. The retailer base grew from 4000 retailers at start-up over 6000 upon his departure in 2000.”
On March 20, 2000, he was appointed as Chief Executive Officer of the New Mexico Lottery Authority. Tom remained in New Mexico for 5 ½ years. During that time New Mexico Lottery sales rose by 40% and the return to education increased by 55%. In November of 2005 Tom left New Mexico to become the first Executive Director of the North Carolina Education Lottery (NCEL). Despite a rocky beginning, due to pre start-up controversies, the NCEL sold its first ticket on March 30, 2006. Along with its online vendor, GTECH Corporation the NCEL processed and installed over 5000 retailers in 115 days, the fastest U.S. launch at the time. Upon his departure in 2010, the NCEL had recorded 3 successive years of increased sales and grown its retailer base to over 6400 retailers.
In September of 2010, Tom joined Linq3 as Executive Vice President. Linq3 is a cutting edge technology company that has developed the secure protocol for lottery transactions on ATM’s, fuel pumps, taxicabs and other unmanned points of sale. Linq3 is currently working with several lotteries to incorporate these new distribution points for the sale of lottery games to reach new players as well as engage infrequent players sooner.
In 2005, Tom served as the President of the North American Association of State and Provincial Lotteries (NASPL). He previously served as Chairman of the NASPL Standards Initiative Committee. In 2009 Tom served as President of the Multistate Lottery Association (MUSL). During his tenure as President, he was instrumental in leading the collaboration with Mega Millions states to initiate cross-selling of Powerball and Mega Millions in 42 U.S lottery jurisdictions. In 2005,Tom also served as Vice-Chairman of Powerball. Including his time in the lottery industry, Shaheen has more than 33 years of management experience including 8 years with Eastern Airlines. He is a native of the great motor city, Detroit, Michigan and is a 1975 graduate of Wayne State University with a degree in Business Administration.
Major Peter J. O’Connell Lifetime Achievement Recipients
George Andersen - Deceased - Former Director, Minnesota Lottery, US
Ralph Batch - Deceased - Former Director, NJ, IL & DE Lotteries, US
Ray Bates - Former National Lottery Director, Irish Lottery, IRELAND
Daniel Bower - Co-founder of Scientific Games; , US
Margaret DeFrancisco, President & CEO, Georgia Lottery, US
David Gale - Executive Director of the North American Association of State and Provincial Lotteries, US
Arch Gleason - President& CEO, Kentucky Lottery Corporation, US
Rebecca Paul Hargrove -- President & CEO, Tennessee Education Lottery, US
Clint Harris - Former Executive Director, Minnesota State Lottery, US
James Hosker - Former Executive Director, Massachusetts Lottery + GTECH Executive, US
James Kennedy, Chief Marketing Officer, Scientific Games, US
Connie Laverty O'Connor, Sr. Vice President & Chief Marketing Officer, GTECH, USA
Cluny Macpherson - Former President, Atlantic Lottery Corporation, CANADA
Garth Manness - Former President, Ontario Lottery Corporation, CANADA
John Musgrave, Executive Director, West Virginia Lottery, US
Reidar Nordby Jr. - Former President &CEO, Norsk Tipping, NORWAY
Major Peter J. O-Connell - Former Executive Director, RI Lottery, US
John Pittman, Vice President of Marketing, Intralot, US
Vic Poleschuk, Former President and CEO of British Columbia Lottery Corp, CANADA
Edward Powers - Deceased - Director of First Modern US Lottery, New Hampshire, US
Jim Scroggins - Former Director of the Oklahoma Lottery, US
Guy Simonis - Former President, British Columbia, CANADA
Dr. Edward Stanek - Former President & CEO, Iowa Lottery Authority, US
Charles Frost Strutt - Executive Director, MUSL, US
Ed Trees, Regional VP Sales, Printed Products, Scientific Games; Former Director Pennsylvania Lottery, US
James Wimsatt - Former Executive Director, New Hampshire Lottery Commission, US
*Stephen Wynn - CEO, Wynn Resorts, Nevada, US
Jerome Young - Deceased -Vice President, IGT, US
Mark Zamarripa - Former Director, Colorado Lottery, US
Greg Ziemak - Former Director, Connecticut and Kansas Lottery