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RGT chief tribute to Goulden for sterling service

19 January 2016

MARC ETCHES, chief executive of the Responsible Gambling Trust, has paid tribute to Neil Goulden, who is set to retire as chairman and trustee of the charity after five years.Goulden, who said he would continue as chairman until his replacement was found, explained he felt it was the right time to step down. 

He had been the subject of criticism in newspaper reports in recent weeks due to his role as chairman of the Association of British Bookmakers, which he held simultaneously to his position at RGT for more than two years until stepping down in 2014, although he denied there was any conflict of interests. Etches said of Goulden:“Neil has been an outstanding chairman, who used his widely respected position within the industry to establish a universal commitment by operators to funding research, education and treatment which addresses gambling-related harm. “He is absolutely committed to minimising gambling related harm and without his ability to gain sufficient confidence and engagement from the industry, the regulator and government, RGT would not be as well placed as it is today to meet its charitable objectives.”RGT’s senior independent trustee, Professor Jo Wolff, will lead the process to appoint a new chairperson. 

Goulden said of his time at RGT: “Following a baptism of fire in 2011, I am proud that RGT has grown into a financially and operationally stable charity that does exceptional work in minimising gambling-related harm. ”Meanwhile, RGT last week said it had commissioned an international evidence review of product-based harm minimisation. The review will be carried out by Sophro Ltd, with the final report due to be published this autumn. 

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