Maine Sports Betting Official on Leave After Offensive Tweets

A sports betting official in Maine sent out a series of offensive tweets and was suspended with pay. The suspension of Milt Champion (l.) came after he used sexist and racist remarks in tweets.

Maine Sports Betting Official on Leave After Offensive Tweets

The official leading Maine’s adoption of sports betting was placed on paid leave last week, a decision announced after the Press Herald inquired about Tweets he had recently posted that contained sexist language and racist connotations.

Milt Champion, executive director of the Maine Gambling Control Unit, was placed on paid leave May 17 in the wake of reported offensive tweets.

The Maine Department of Public Safety, which oversees the gambling unit, announced the suspension hours after a reporter questioned Champion.

In a tweet on May 6, Champion expressed frustration about being told “ladies” was an unprofessional term for females and suggested “Bitches” would be more appropriate.

Then, in a May 14 tweet, Champion replied to a video showing demonstrators with Patriot Front, a white nationalist group, marching in Washington, D.C.

He wrote: “At least they are not burning down cities and looting stores.” The Anti-Defamation League describes Patriot Front as a “white supremacist group” and says it is “responsible for the vast majority of white supremacist propaganda distributed in the United States” since 2019.

Champion did not return multiple calls asking about the tweets.

“I can confirm that Director Champion has been placed on paid administrative leave, pending a review that is being conducted by the Bureau of Human Resources,” Lt. Thomas Pickering of the Maine State Police wrote in an email to the Press Herald. “Given that this is an ongoing, personnel-related matter, the department is unable to comment further.”

Champion has been in his position since November 2016, and earned a salary of $94,851.60 in 2022, according to state records. He’s been in the gambling industry for 36 years, working 20 in casinos and 16 as a regulator, according to an interview with

Champion and a staff of two workers drafted rules governing sports betting in the state. He is also in charge of approving deals with gambling providers and awarding betting licenses.

The Penobscot, Maliseet and Micmac tribes already struck a deal with Caesars Sportsbook, but the executive director of the Gambling Control Unit has the say over whether those deals become official, based on the revenue splits in the contract. Providers can receive up to 40 percent of the revenue they generate with an operator, though deals awarding them between 30 percent and 40 percent need the executive director’s approval.