Bob Mera was an avid blackjack player who eventually became a dealer in several Atlantic City casinos. It was as a dealer that he developed his love for casino chips. In the early 1990’s, Bob began selling casino chips and related items from a pushcart at the Boardwalk One mall near Caesars Atlantic City. Soon he opened a retail shop in the mall and called it the “Gaming Emporium.” After a couple of years, Bob moved out of his cramped location at Boardwalk One Mall … into a larger store front right on the Atlantic City Boardwalk (still called “The Gaming Emporium”) that was located between Tropicana and Bally’s Grand … now Hilton…. where he maintained a collector’s bid board and offered “Bob’s Bucks” in trade for chips he purchased against his retail prices of other store merchandise.
Mera’s shop became the unofficial headquarters for chipping activity in Atlantic City, with many club members stopping in whenever they were in the area. As a result of his enthusiasm for the hobby and his unique exposure in the mall, Bob became the top recruiter of new members for CC&CC for an unprecedented five years in a row: 1990 through 1994.
In 1995, Mera became the driving force behind the formation of the Atlantic City Chapter of CC&CC, one of the Club’s first chapters. He is credited with having recruited a majority of the members of the 350-member chapter.
Mera passed away in 1999, and was inducted into the Hall of Fame posthumously in 2002.