It is with great sadness and sorrow that EL has received the news of the passing of Mr Guy Simonis.
Guy played a leading role in the worldwide development of the Lottery sector.
He was the founding father of the World Lotteries Association and a close friend, inspirator and example to many in EL.
EL would like to thank Guy for all his achievements and ongoing dedication to the lottery sector and with that to the benefit of society.
EL shares its condolences with his family, friends, and colleagues. Never forgotten, may Guy rest in peace.
The European Lotteries
Guy Simonis was a unique character, whom I had the privilege to call a friend. His extraordinary list of achievements in the lottery sector are well known to anyone who has inhabited our lottery world for more than a year or two. He was a complex character. He thought, and wrote, a lot about our lottery business. He would never just accept the conventional, but he would analyse and find unique solutions. He could rightly be described as the thought leader of our sector.
He was a politician with the mix of skills coupled with the strong and persuasive personality required to bring about such an important unifying development as the creation of the WLA.
He was also a great presenter and a ready participant in WLA/NASPL Panels, Seminars and Congresses. He was always ready to share his own experiences with presentations on new games and successful and not-so-successful innovations in his lottery. His EREWHON programme for Senior Lottery Management was a trailblazer and a great model for lottery education.
And he was also an extraordinary musician and would … in the old days of late-night Supplier Suites at Conferences and Congresses … improvise on the piano and sing and play long into the night.
He never set out to “win friends”. You either took him as he was or you could “go to hell”. He certainly did not suffer fools gladly. But, when you got beyond this tough and demanding exterior you found a sensitive and thoughtful man who valued and appreciated true friendship.
He will be missed … but he has left a lasting legacy.
Ray Bates, EL Honorary President