The Thoroughbred Racing Associations board of directors elected Scott Wells, president of Remington Park in Oklahoma City, the organization's 36th president at its March 5 meeting in Tampa, Fla.
Wells will succeed Chris McErlean, who had served since 2011.
A son and grandson of noted horsemen, Wells served as assistant trainer to two Hall of Famers in D. Wayne Lukas and Jack Van Berg, and trained horses himself in the 1970s and 1980s before taking an entry level job in the Remington Park press box in 1990.
By 1993 he was assistant general manager at Hollywood Park and soon became general manager of Ruidoso Downs. Working for Lone Star Park, Wells was instrumental in the reopening of the Hipodromo de las Americas in Mexico City and oversaw the reopening of Maronas, the national racetrack of Uruguay.
He returned to Remington Park in 2005 and led the track through construction of a casino and eventually through the transition to new ownership, as Remington Park was acquired by Global Gaming Solutions in 2010.
"The TRA brings together many of the most brilliant and dedicated people in the sport of racing," said Wells. "To serve the organization is an honor and a pleasure, but I consider it more an opportunity to continue to learn from my colleagues. One thing we all agree on: We have a great product and a passionate fan base. Gaining market share in today's competitive market will be an ongoing challenge. But by investing resources and creativity and through collaboration with our partners, the horsemen, and the fans, we can grow this sport in meaningful ways."
The TRA board also elected Peter N. Berube as vice president and Joe Wilson as secretary. Re-elected were Randall D. Sampson as vice president, William I. Fasy as treasurer, and Christopher Scherf as executive vice president.
Sampson, president of Canterbury Park since the company's 1994 formation, has been on the TRA board of directors since 1998 and is past president of the Minnesota Thoroughbred Association. Berube serves as general manager of Tampa Bay Downs in Oldsmar, Fla. and has been with the organization for 18 years. He has been a member of both the TRA and Equibase boards since 2007.
Wilson is chief operating officer for racing operations at Greenwood Racing which owns Parx Racing, Atlantic City Race Course, and is a partner in Freehold Raceway. He has 31 years of experience in the racing industry including 14 years with Greenwood and 17 years between Amtote and Scientific Games. He has been a TRA director since 2002.
Fasy is president of Delaware Park and has more than 20 years experience in the hospitality and entertainment business. He has served as TRA treasurer since 2001. Scherf has been the TRA executive vice president since 1988. Prior to joining the TRA in 1982, he was director of press relations for the New York Racing Association.
Newly elected to the TRA board as directors or alternates were Dan Silver for Penn National, Bill Thomason for Keeneland, and John Walsh for Hawthorne.