Web Letter: Suffolk OTB responds to Monday Briefing

Your Monday Briefing on May 9 was disappointing, to say the least. I realize that you were ‘opining’ here, but typically opining is not an excuse to neglect fact-checking.

Here we go:

(1) Patrick Byrne, Jr. is no longer a member of the Board of Directors and, no, he is not a Democrat.
(2) Marietta Seaman is no longer the Vice-President of Suffolk OTB
(3) Neil Tiger is no longer the Corporate Counsel of Suffolk OTB
(4) Celine Gazes is, in fact, Suffolk OTB’s Comptroller, but here you are wrong on two counts: she is registered as a ‘blank’ and she came to Suffolk OTB via the widely respected auditing firm of AVZ
(5) Paul Edelstein is no longer the Director of Wagering Operations and Services

The correct names are:

(1)   Eddie Wynn (Democrat)
(2)   Anthony Pancella III (Republican)
(3)   James McManmon (Democrat)
(4)   You got Celine’s name right
(5)   Kim Edelstein (Democrat)

Suffolk OTB’s President, Jeffrey A. Casale, has extensive private sector experience, having spent 24 years working for the Manhattan-based TIAA-CREF, one of the nation’s largest and most respected financial services organizations. He was named an Officer of TIAA-CREF and was largely responsible for managing customer service operations for TIAA-CREF’s Personal Annuity, Individual Insurance, and Mutual Fund participants.

I would suggest that when, in the future, you sit down to write an opinion piece that you afford your subject the professional courtesy of a phone call just to make sure that your basic facts are correct, not 50 percent wrong.

Oh, and also, consider throwing in some information that does not jibe with your negative assessment of Suffolk OTB. For starters, under President Jeffrey A. Casale, Suffolk OTB’s operating expenditures have decreased by approximately $2.3 million, or 9 percent, from 2004 through 2008.

Debbie Pfeiffer

Director of Public and Government Affairs
Suffolk Regional Off-Track Betting Corporation

Editor’s note: The Monday Briefing has been updated to reflect the more current employee list.