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Casino czar Steve Crosby’s impossible mission

Steve Crosby had a comfortable post in academia and was nearing retirement. So why is he taking on the toughest job in Massachusetts?

STEVE CROSBY was sitting in his comfortable office at the University of Massachusetts Boston when the call came.

It was just before Thanksgiving 2011, and Sydney Asbury, a top aide to Governor Deval Patrick, wanted to talk casinos. In days, Patrick would sign the Legislature’s new casino bill into law, creating a gaming commission vested with enormous powers to shape the multibillion-dollar industry taking root here. Would Crosby consider leading it?

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