This year, 10 award winners were broken down into two categories: Proven Leaders and Rising Stars. To qualify as a Proven Leader, candidates must have worked in the gaming industry for a minimum of 10 years and have been in their current position for at least one year. They must also work for a gaming industry company and hold a position of director or higher, having demonstrated exceptional achievement in at least three of the following areas: 1) ability to go above and beyond job responsibilities; 2) commitment to company and co-workers; 3) contributions to the industry as a whole; 4) commitment to mentoring; and 5) strong overall life balance.
The 2008 Great Women of Gaming Proven Leader Award winners are:
• Cath Burns, vice president, Asia-Pacific and managing director, Bally Macau.
• Libby Francisco, chief operations officer, Tohono O’odham Gaming Enterprise.
• Jana McKeag, president and co-owner, Lowry Strategies.
• Cynthia Kiser Murphy, president and COO, New York – New York Hotel & Casino.
• Linda Roe, vice president of business development and client relations, Thalden-Boyd-Emery Architects.
To qualify as a Rising Star, candidates must have worked in the gaming industry for a minimum of three years and have been in their current position for at least one year. They must also work for a gaming industry company and hold a position of manager or higher, having demonstrated exceptional achievement in at least three of the same five areas as proven Leaders.
The 2008 Great Women of Gaming Rising Star Award winners are:
• Michelle Chatigny, vice president of compliance, International Game Technology.
• Catina Moore, senior manager of operations, WMS Gaming.
• Valerie Morris, regional vice president of sales, communications and community relations, Harrah’s Entertainment.
• Treena L. Parvello, director of marketing and public relations, Tohono O’odham Gaming Enterprise.
• Jennifer Roberts, associate attorney, Gaming and Regulatory Department, Lionel Sawyer & Collins Las Vegas.
This year’s judging committee comprised of former Great Women of Gaming award winners and other industry leaders including Brenda Boudreaux, vice president of product management, International Game Technology; Dona Cassese, creative director of global marketing communications and operations, Aristocrat Americas; Tracey Chernay, senior vice president of sales and marketing, Transact Technologies; Christie Eickelman, senior director of worldwide marketing, Gaming Laboratories International; Christie Modlin, tribal chair, Iowa Tribe of Oklahoma; Shelia Morago, executive director, Arizona Indian Gaming Commission; Courtney Muller, group vice president, Reed Exhibitions; Debra J. Nelson, vice president of corporate diversity and community affairs, MGM MIRAGE; Mary Lynn Palenik, director of development, research and analysis, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP; and Lynn “Nay” Valbeauna, vice chair, San Manuel Band of Mission Indians.
“This year’s candidates were an accomplished group of women from all facets of the gaming industry,” said Peter Mead, publisher of Casino Enterprise Management Magazine. “Our judges had a difficult decision choosing the winners, and I believe they did an excellent job selecting the top 10. But, in the end, each woman nominated is a Great Women of Gaming to our industry. It’s been a pleasure of ours to continue to honor these women as they continue to strive for personal and professional excellence.”
An in-depth article featuring profiles of this year’s 10 award winners will be featured in the May issue of Casino Enterprise Management Magazine. The winners will also receive the prestigious crystal Great Women of Gaming Award and will be honored at a dedicated ceremony.