Former AGA Staff Member Hale Hired by Churchill Downs

Published Sunday, November 15, 2009 -

D. Brett Hale, will become the Churchill Downs senior vice president of corporate and government relations. Recently a staff member at the American Gaming Association as Vice President, of Government Affairs. Hale's extensive Capitol Hill experience began in 1993, where he worked in the office of U.S. Senator. Mitch McConnell Republican from Kentucky. Since then, he has worked with organizations including the National Republican Senatorial Committee, Friends for Slade Gorton, the Republican National Committee, and the National Republican Congressional Committee. Hale received a bachelor of arts degree from Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, Kentucky. He also studied at the Kentucky Institute for International Studies in Munich, Germany.

As a casino lobbyist he will represent Churchill Downs in legislative matters, including regulated online gambling and the online casino prohibition in the USA.

There is speculation that hiring Hale by the Churchill Downs racetrack will pave the way for the organization to be in the loop when online gambling becomes regulated in the USA. It is also thought that the addition of Hale to the administration of the Churchill Downs group will help get the company over legal hurdles in Washington as the Department of Justice continues to clamp down on online gambling activities in the USA.

The American Gaming Association has opposed Internet gambling, even though recently some members, including Harrah's Entertainment, have reversed their positions and now pursue regulation of online casinos and gaming. The recent acquisition of by Churchill Downs will certainly shake things up during lobby efforts in Washington by the American Gaming Association.

Churchill Downs Chief Executive Officer, Robert L. Evans, said that Hale, “ will make a valued contribution to advancing our business strategy and performance at both the state and federal level.” It is thought that Hales power broker position will in some ways protect Churchill Down’s new business strategy from competition from other online gambling interests.

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