With plenty of movers and shakers around the industry, allow CasinoBeats to give you the rundown on a number of recent appointments.


National online self-exclusion scheme Gamstop has announced that Mike Dixon, CEO of Addaction, has been appointed as a non-executive director.

Specialising in developing treatment support networks and operating voluntary communities, Dixon has served as chief executive of addiction recovery and mental health charity Addaction since May 2017.

Jenny Watson, Chair of Gamstop, stated:“These changes help to strengthen our
independence and I would like to thank the RGA for the constructive nature of our
discussions. As we continue to develop, Mike Dixon’s insight and experience will
provide the operational team with strong independent challenge.”

Penn National Gaming

Casino and racetrack operator Penn National Gaming is to begin searching for a new CFO next year, when William Fair steps down at the conclusion of his current employment contract term, which expires March 31, 2020.

Fair has agreed to stay with the company until the end of 2020’s first quarter in order to allow time for a formal search for his successor, as well as ensure a seamless transition of responsibilities.

He has served in the current role of CFO since 2017, after joining Penn as senior vice president and chief development officer five years ago.

Timothy Wilmott, Penn’s CEO, commented, “We want to express our sincere gratitude to BJ for his many contributions to Penn National’s success during what has been a transformational period for our Company.

“Over the last five years, BJ has played a significant role in overseeing and structuring the financing strategies for our major growth initiatives, which include our recently completed acquisition of Pinnacle Entertainment, the ongoing development of our two new Pennsylvania during BJ’s tenure, he oversaw the construction of Plainridge Park Casino and helped lead our efforts to acquire Tropicana Las Vegas, Margaritaville Resort, and most recently Greektown Casino.”

Hawthorne Race Course

In anticipation of its licensure as part of Illinois’ recent casino and gaming expansion, Hawthorne Race Course has hired Kevin Kline as its new CEO of gaming.

This comes as the business applies to the state’s gaming board for a casino gaming licence, with judgement expected to be brought forward before the end of the year.

Among Kline’s prior experience is of COO and GM of Resorts World Catskills and Monticello Raceway for Empire Resorts in New York, as well as leading the opening of the first casino in Ohio in the $450m Horseshoe Cincinnati.

“The integration of casino-style gaming at Illinois race tracks is a tremendous opportunity that comes with unique challenges and responsibilities,” explained Tim Carey, CEO and president of Hawthorne Casino and Race Course.

“Our goal is to develop one of the nation’s premiere gaming experiences and an all-star executive team will be crucial. Kevin has a proven track record of successful ground-up developments of new casinos and multi-property management including at race tracks, plus direct experience with gaming in the Chicagoland market.”


A trio of board changes haven taken place at the enlarged Gamesys Group, which sees Lee Fenton appointed as CEO, Robeson Reeves as COO and Simon Wykes, formerly CEO of operations at Jackpotjoy, moved to the role of transition director, and will remain on the JPJ Board for a 12-month tenure.

This comes as JPJ Group completes the £490m acquisition of Gamesys, with the entity now offering bingo and casino games via jackpotjoy.com, virgingames.com, botemania.es, verajohn.com, heartbingo.co.uk and monopolycasino.com.

“Following [the] successful completion, I am very excited to join the enlarged group as CEO,” Fenton noted.

“The combination of two leading and complementary businesses has created an organisation with greater scale and capability which stands the new Gamesys Group in good stead as the competitive and regulatory environment continues to evolve.”

San Manuel Band of Mission Indians

An executive leadership team has been established by the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians, designed to support the tribe in its governmental and commercial endeavours.

Consisting of six positions, Peter Arceo, general manager of San Manuel Casino, is to oversee all operations for the property, which represents the primary economic venture of the tribe.

He will be joined by Erin Copeland, chief legal and compliance officer, Dan Little, chief intergovernmental and tribal affairs officer, Brigitte Saria, chief people and infrastructure officer, Rikki Tanenbaum, CMO and Laurens Vosloo, CFO.

The six are to report directly to CEO Loren Gill, who commented: It is an exciting time at San Manuel. I am truly honoured to work with so many outstanding leaders who have been critical to our success.

“Ensuring we have the right people in the right places is a major priority for us and this is the first step in setting a strong foundation that allows for future growth and development. I’m excited for each of them in this next step in their career as they’re all deserving of this recognition and promotion.”