Last Wednesday, June 27, the Poker Players announced that it has been rebranded as the Poker Alliance and will henceforth be led by Mark Brenner, a longtime business development and government relations executive. The Poker Alliance will therefore immediately take over the role of being the unified voice for the millions of United States citizens who would like fair, safe and regulated gaming. Most importantly, the Poker Alliance will further take on the mantle of being the largest lobbying group that represents various aspects of the poker community in the United States.
It is worth noting that the Poker Players Alliance was taken over by online poker-content streaming company Poker Central prior to being rebranded. Poker Central’s move to take control of the organization effectively returns the former Poker Players Alliance to the age of corporate backing that the poker-focused lobbying and research group had enjoyed in the past. In fact, the group had been 99 percent corporate-backed since it was formed in 2005 – this only changed in late 2017 when PokerStars, one of the group’s earlier corporate backers decided to pull its support.
After that occurrence, the group had to brave a number of other unfortunate events. First, its Executive Director, Jon Pappas stepped down as the head of the group – he was replaced by Rich Muny. Apparently, Muny had inherited even more problems – one of his first moves as the Executive Director of the lobbying group was to warn U.S. poker players that the Poker Players Alliance was in dire need of $25,000 in financial contributions if it was going to survive. The group eventually failed to raise the said amount and this brought it a stretch closer to closure.
Thankfully, the acquisition of the group’s assets and lobbying tools by Poker Central has effectively rescued the group and its activities from financial oblivion. The Poker Alliance can now start afresh with new leadership and identity as well as a pretty reliable source of funding.
“Poker Alliance will be a dedicated voice for the millions of Americans who support expanding the sporting world of poker, in particular, the players seeking to enjoy safe, well-regulated, and fair games in myriad locations and formats. The revamped association will prioritize advocating for consumer protection and states’ rights in the context of poker and internet gaming,” explains the press release.
Even though the Poker Alliance will be under new leadership, existing members, including outgoing president Richard Muny will still be kept around – Muny himself will be part of the Poker Alliance’s advisory board.
“I’m very optimistic about Poker Alliance’s potential to bring new innovations and a different skill set to the fight for poker, serving its membership and consumers in general. Along with my fellow advisors to the new leadership, I look forward to advocating for the great game of poker as part of Poker Alliance,” Muny said.