About PlayIllinois

Our Mission

To provide the latest news and most accurate information about legal and regulated online gambling in Illinois.

PlayIllinois Team

Managing Editor: Robyn McNeil

Side on headshot, back and white. Robyn McNeil looks sideways at the camera smiling. Wearing a summer dress, her bare shoulder and phoenix tattoo are exposed.

Before joining PlayIllinois, Robyn McNeil spent the better part of two decades as a writer and editor telling other people’s stories. Career-wise, however, Robyn is very much a ‘Girl Friday’ with experience in kitchens, music, film, tech, and journalism⁠ — now with a gambling bend. Robyn holds degrees in sociology and anthropology, gender and journalism. She also studied business and public relations. The proud mom lives in a newly empty nest in Halifax, Nova Scotia, with her rescue kitty, Edith Edna.

Managing Editor: Dave Briggs

Dave Briggs

Before joining PlayIllinois, Dave Briggs worked for 25 years as a writer and editor, mainly covering horse racing in Canada. Dave holds a master’s degree in journalism from Western University and was a 2018 inductee into the Communicators’ Corner of the US Harness Racing Hall of Fame. Beyond a deep passion for family and music, Dave has a mostly tragic, lifelong love of Detroit sports teams. He lives in Port Stanley, Ontario, with his wife and their beloved Vizsla named California.

Read more from Dave here

Contributor: Joe Boozell

Joe Boozell, who lives in the Chicago area, was (previously) the Managing Editor for PlayIllinois.com. Before, he was a college sports writer for NCAA.com (beginning in 2015). Joe’s work has also appeared in Bleacher Report, FoxSports.com and NBA.com. Growing up, Boozell squared off against Anthony Davis and Frank Kaminsky in the Chicagoland basketball scene … you can imagine how that went.

Read more from Joe Boozell here.

Contributor: Matthew Kredell

Matthew Kredell has covered efforts to legalize and regulate online gambling since 2007. A USC journalism alum, Kredell made his first foray into sports betting legalization in 2010. His work has been featured in the Los Angeles Daily News, Playboy, Men’s Journal, Los Angeles magazine, LA Weekly and ESPN.

Read more from Matthew Kredell here.

Contributor: Derek Helling

Derek Helling is a lead writer for PlayUSA and the manager of BetHer. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

Read more from Derek Helling here.

Contributor: Matt Boecker

Matt Boecker is a 2020 graduate of Northern Illinois University hailing from Chicago. Boecker specializes in coverage of sports betting and legalization. Former teammates and coworkers describe him as a nice guy who tries hard and loves the game.

Read more from Matt Boecker here.

Content Manager: Ian St. Clair

Ian St. Clair manages the sites for some of the biggest gambling markets in the US, including PlayIllinois.com. He has covered the sports betting and gambling industry for over two years and is now leading the charge in the most influential markets to potentially launch online casinos. A University of Northern Colorado graduate, he also has over a decade of journalism experience covering college and professional athletics. He and his wife’s three cats secretly run their house, including brothers Cheech and Chong.

Head of Production, Play Sites: Kim Yuhl

Kim Yuhl is the content lead for Play-branded sites, including PlayIllinois.com. She has experience writing and reporting on poker culture and the legalization and launch of sports betting in the US. Yuhl was a business story strategist for small businesses. She has a bachelor’s degree in communications.

Vice President of Catena North America and Analyst: Dustin Gouker

Dustin Gouker is the Vice President of Catena North America and head of content for PlayUSA and regional Play-branded sites, including PlayIllinois.com. He has reported on and analyzed online sports betting, online casino, online poker and daily fantasy sports industries since 2015. He was a sports journalist for more than 15 years, working as a reporter, editor and designer, including stops at The Washington Post and the Washington Examiner.

More About PlayIllinois

PlayIllinois is the Illinois-centric site for a series of Play-branded news and informational sites available throughout the country. We cover all aspects of Illinois gambling, including the Chicago casino project, the burgeoning sports betting industry, casinos, lottery and VGTs.

We are not directly affiliated with any specific casino, sportsbook, mobile sports betting app or gaming website. We are an independently owned and operated commercial organization.

Advertising Disclosure

Our funding comes via advertising relationships with several legal online gaming operators. In some cases, when you visit a site,  including online sportsbooks, casino sites, poker sites and daily fantasy sports sites, we may receive financial compensation from the casino or poker site. We may also sell advertising to various partners.

Our policy regarding advertisers is simple:

  • Advertisers do not have a say over the content on PlayIllinois.com.
  • Our goal is to provide credible, objective information about legal online gaming options in Indiana, specifically and more generally throughout the US. We believe that this goal naturally produces the best information for both customers and operators, therefore for us.
  • We mark all paid advertisements or advertisements that appear in a format (such as banner ads) that are widely understood to be advertisements.

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