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Minister Browne announces appointment of new CEO Designate of the Gambling Regulatory Authority of Ireland

Minister of State with responsibility for Law Reform James Browne TD, has today announced the appointment of Ms. Anne Marie Caulfield as the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Designate of the Gambling Regulatory Authority of Ireland.


Legislation is currently being prepared for publication in the autumn. This will provide for the establishment of the new regulatory authority in Ireland, which is expected to become operational in 2023.  

The Department of Justice has established a Programme Board to oversee the process and to ensure that the different work streams are progressed in parallel to the legislative process. This work, in combination with the early appointment of a CEO Designate, is aimed at minimising the time between the enactment of the legislation and the date on which the regulator commences operations. 

Ms Caulfield’s appointment follows an open, international competition run by the Public Appointments Service.


Speaking on the appointment of Ms. Caulfield today, Minister Browne said:


“I am delighted to announce the appointment of Anne Marie Caulfield, who will bring a wealth of professional experience and expertise to the role.


The appointment of the CEO Designate is an important milestone in the future establishment of the Gambling Regulatory Authority, advancing a key Programme for Government commitment. Greater regulation of the gambling industry in Ireland has long been called for and is a key priority for me as Minister. 


This is an incredibly important piece of work from a social perspective and will make a real difference in preventing harm to people from problem gambling, but also to ensuring that modern and effective licensing and regulatory measures are in place for the industry.” 


Noting the significance of the appointment of a CEO Designate, Minister Browne said: 


“Anne Marie’s preparatory work over the coming months, in parallel with the drafting and passage of the enabling legislation, will ensure that the Regulatory Authority will be ready to hit the ground running upon its establishment.


She is working closely with my Department to identify staffing and resourcing needs and to develop procedures for how the Authority will function once operational.


The early appointment of the CEO Designate will bring the benefit of continuity and leadership for the new Authority in its formative stages through to its formal establishment and commencement of its regulatory functions next year. ”


 Speaking about her new role, Ms. Caulfield said:


“It is a great privilege to be appointed as CEO Designate of the Gambling Regulatory Authority of Ireland. Effective and efficient regulation of this sector is crucial and I relish the challenge of putting that framework in place.  


The Authority must be built on a foundation of robust legislation and I welcome the progress to date of the draft Gambling Regulation Bill.


I look forward to developing a close working relationship with all of the stakeholders in the sector, Gambling Regulators elsewhere in the EU and with Department of Justice officials.” 




Notes for Editors. 


  • The Programme for Government gives a clear commitment to establish a gambling regulator, which will be focused on public safety and wellbeing.


  • It is also a priority action under Justice Plan 2022, which sets out the activities and initiatives being delivered by my Department in 2022 .


  • The regulator will have responsibility for regulating both in-person and online gambling, gambling advertising, gambling websites and apps.


  • It is expected that the Authority will commence operations as soon as possible after the draft Gambling Regulation Bill is enacted.


  • To that end, the Department has established a Programme Board to ensure that the legislation and the operational preparations for the authority are progressed in parallel. 


  • There is a pathway mapped for this legislation progressing which, with the cooperation of the Houses of the Oireachtas, will facilitate the Authority being established and operational in 2023.


Biography – Anne Marie Caulfield 


Anne Marie Caulfield has extensive experience in senior roles in the Civil and Public Service which are directly relevant to the role of CEO of the Gambling Regulatory Authority of Ireland.


She has substantial regulatory policy and operational regulatory experience, having held the position of Director (CEO) of the Residential Tenancies Board for eight years (2008 – 2016). In this role she led the development of the RTB ESRI Rent Index, overseeing several research publications and a suite of ICT projects. 


Anne Marie’s assignments have also included Head of Structural Funds, Cohesion Policy & North-South co-operation in the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform (DPER). In this role she was involved in EU Cohesion policy negotiations, overseeing the administration of €800m Structural Funds and a number of North-South matters, include the PEACE programme and the North-South Ministerial Council. 


Most recently, Anne Marie led the Capability Review Programme, a key action under the 2030 Civil Service Reform agenda. 


Appointed to the position of Principal Officer in 2006, she also has extensive governance experience, including serving on the Board of Directors of the Heritage Council and on Audit/Finance/Risk Committees of a number of public bodies including the Heritage Council, Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB) and in DPER.  


Anne Marie holds a Bachelor of Commerce (B. Comm) and MBA, both from UCD.