The first three names for iGaming Business’ ‘Most Influential Women’ 2019 list have been revealed. This initiative aims to showcase the industry’s most accomplished women and inspire others to progress their careers within the industry.
“Gaming, like many other industries, has significantly fewer women than men at the top levels of business and a persisting gender pay gap. However, there are a growing number of women occupying extremely important roles within our industry,” said Stephen Carter, editorial director of iGaming Business.
“This year’s list features women who have played key roles in transformations within their organisations, women who’ve been champions of diversity and women who’ve raised the profile of the entire sector itself.”
The first nominees were announced today:
Melissa Blau, Director of iGaming Capitol is the first individual to be mentioned. She’s a well-known advocate for innovation and has been part of the Clarion Start-up Launchpad since it begun in 2009. One of her favourite successes of this project is that of NumberFire, which FanDuel acquired within four months of the brand winning the initiative.
Growing the US market
Born in the US, Blau returned to her homeland four years ago after years of working in Europe. Since then, she’s played an important role in developing the country’s ever-growing market. She consults various gaming businesses and is a well-known advocate for innovation.
The second person to make the list is Britt Boeskov, Chief Experience Officer for Kindred. In the past year, she has been promoted within Kindred and also become a board member at Racecourse Media Group. In addition to this year’s recognition, she also featured on the 2018 list.
Hopes that more women will follow
When speaking about her appointment for the latter of these companies, Boeskov says that she hopes more women will be selected for higher positions going forward. Her words were: “There is a sound logical argument that boards over time should become much more diverse, not just in terms of gender but also to represent the general population and that company’s stakeholders.”
Shannon DeHaven, Deputy Director of Digital Directions for Michigan Lottery, is the third name on the list. DeHaven took a leading role in iLottery operations three years ago. Over the course of this fiscal year, online sales have gone beyond $1 million. Since the lottery is only allowed to offer games online if one with the same mechanics was offered before 2004, this figure is even more impressive.
When talking about the lottery’s success, DeHaven cites not being scared of failure as a key factor. She said: “We failed more than once, but our success actually came from those failures. Here in my division, we often say: ‘If you’re not failing, you might not be trying hard enough’.”
Watch out for more as iGaming Business rolls out the rest of the nominees during the course of this week.