Jamul Casino hired new President and General Manager, Mary Cheeks, to lead the transition. Cheeks has 30 years of experience in casino management and casino finance. One of her career highlights includes her pivotal role in transforming Harrah's Casino in Atlantic City, N.J., into a resort that became one of the most profitable gaming establishments in Atlantic City. Prior to joining the Jamul Casino team, she was General Manager for Rivers Casino & Resort in Schenectady, N.Y., one of four new casino licenses outside of Tribal Gaming and Racinos.
Cheeks has recruited a world-class management team at Jamul Casino consisting of:
- Allison Owen, Vice President of Human Resources
- Josh Ford, Vice President of Business Intelligence
- Raman Natarajan, Vice President of Food & Beverage
- Scott Bauer, Vice President of Marketing
- Tony Ventura, Vice President of Gaming Operations
- Cathy Behnen, Chief Financial Officer
As part of its relaunch, Jamul Casino has developed a new logo and identity focused on being friendly, fun, and true to its roots. The word "Jamul" means "Sweetwater."
The official relaunch of the newly renamed Jamul Casino was marked with a block party celebration on Aug. 4. The event drew over 12,000 guests and produced some of the highest activity ever on the gaming floor and in its seven restaurants. The gaming floor has 1,700 slots with everything from penny slots all the way up to $100 slot machines, and 40 table games with over a dozen different types of live games.
The $460 million casino had been managed and operated by a Penn National subsidiary since its opening on October 10, 2016. JIVDC announced in May they would terminate that management agreement. JIVDC stated that the termination of the casino’s current management company agreement with Penn National is a natural next step toward economic self-sufficiency for the Jamul Indian Village.
California's San Diego County has an extremely active gaming community, home to nine casinos. According to the National Indian Gaming Commission, tribal casinos generated nearly $9 billion in revenue in California and Northern Nevada (which doesn't include Las Vegas) in fiscal year 2017, which is a 7.3 percent increase in revenue over the previous year.
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