Pinnacle Entertainment has announced a series of corporate and property-level
promotions designed to help oversee the Company’s growth over the next few
years.Larry Buck, currently Vice President and General Manager of the
Company’s Belterra Casino Resort in southern Indiana, will relocate to
Atlantic City, New Jersey to assume the newly created position of Regional
Vice President, overseeing both the Company’s major Atlantic City project
and Belterra. He also will hold the title of President of Pinnacle-Atlantic
City. A native of Cherry Hill, New Jersey, Mr. Buck began his career in
1983 in the accounting department of the Golden Nugget Atlantic City. After
nine years in Atlantic City in various executive positions, Mr. Buck
assisted in the opening of casinos in Lake Charles, Louisiana and
Metropolis, Illinois. Later, as General Manager, he opened a casino in
Maryland Heights, Missouri before relocating to Rising Sun, Indiana. Mr.
Buck joined Pinnacle in 2004 as Vice President and General Manager of
Belterra and oversaw the opening of the 300-guestroom tower added at
Belterra shortly thereafter.
Kim Townsend, currently Pinnacle’s Senior Vice President of Marketing,
will relocate to Atlantic City to serve as Executive Vice President of
Pinnacle-Atlantic City, working with Mr. Buck on the many development
aspects of Pinnacle’s new major resort project. Ms. Townsend joined
Pinnacle in 2002 and was instrumental in the planning, developing and
opening of L’Auberge du Lac in Lake Charles, Louisiana, as well as the
planning for the Company’s two casinos now under construction in St. Louis,
Missouri. Ms. Townsend, a native of Ocean City, New Jersey, began her
career in 1979 at the Golden Nugget Atlantic City and then held a variety
of marketing positions with the Trump properties in Atlantic City. Later,
she returned to Mirage Resorts (formerly Golden Nugget Inc.) in Las Vegas
and held corporate positions in marketing and development. In those roles,
she assisted in the opening of The Mirage, Treasure Island and Beau Rivage.
In 1997, Ms. Townsend became Vice President-Marketing of Las Vegas Sands,
where she was instrumental in the planning, development and opening of The
Venetian Resort Hotel Casino, one of the largest and most successful casino
resorts in Las Vegas.
Kevin Kaufman is being promoted to General Manager of Belterra, filling
the role being vacated by Mr. Buck. Mr. Kaufman, who currently serves as
Senior Director of Casino Operations at Belterra, began his gaming career
at Harveys Casino Resorts. He worked his way up through increasing areas of
responsibility, including as Director of Casino Operations at Harveys
Council Bluffs. With the sale of Harveys in 2001, Mr. Kaufman joined
Pinnacle as Director of Casino Operations at Belterra Casino Resort. He
became Senior Director of Casino Operations in 2002.
Todd George will relocate to St. Louis to become Vice President and
General Manager of Pinnacle’s $430 million casino now under construction in
downtown St. Louis. Mr. George is currently the General Manager of
Pinnacle’s Boomtown property in Bossier City, Louisiana. Mr. George grew up
in upstate New York and began his career at the Turning Stone tribal casino
near Syracuse, New York. He joined Pinnacle in the accounting department of
Belterra in 2000 and was an integral part of the team that significantly
improved Belterra’s results over the past five years. He became General
Manager of Boomtown Bossier City in 2003, which has performed very well
under his tenure.
Mario Maesano, currently head of marketing at Boomtown Bossier City, is
also relocating to St. Louis as the Senior Director of Marketing. Mr.
Maesano is a native of Atlantic City, New Jersey, and began his gaming
career in 1991 at Resorts Atlantic City. He joined Pinnacle in 2000 in the
marketing department at Belterra, rising to Senior Director of Marketing, a
role that he also held at Pinnacle’s L’Auberge du Lac during its first year
Barry Regula is being promoted to replace Mr. George as General Manager
of Boomtown Bossier City. Currently, Mr. Regula is Senior Director of
Casino Operations at Boomtown Bossier City. Mr. Regula is a native of
Cleveland, Ohio and joined Pinnacle as Director of Entertainment at Casino
Magic Biloxi in 1996. He progressed within that property to become head of
slot operations and VIP services before relocating to Bossier City in 2002.
Keith Henson will relocate to Las Vegas and become Vice President of
Relationship Marketing. Mr. Henson is currently the Senior Director of
Human Resources at L’Auberge du Lac in Lake Charles, Louisiana, where he
oversaw the hiring and training for that property. The opening of L’Auberge
du Lac involved interviewing over 10,000 applicants and training over 2,500
employees. He joined Pinnacle in 1997 as a table games dealer at the
Company’s Boomtown Reno property. Prior to moving to Lake Charles, Mr.
Henson had progressed through various promotions to be Director of
Marketing and Slot Operations at Boomtown Reno.
Rafael Verde also was recently promoted to Assistant General Manager at
Boomtown New Orleans. A native of Venezuela, Mr. Verde began his career in
the gaming industry at Argosy Casino-Baton Rouge in 1994. He joined
Pinnacle at Boomtown in the accounting department in 1999. During 2003 and
2004, he was Senior Director of Finance and Administration at Belterra,
before relocating to Lake Charles where he was Senior Director of Finance
at L’Auberge du Lac during its initial opening period.
“These promotions will support Pinnacle’s major growth plans, including
our new projects in Atlantic City, St. Louis and Lake Charles,” said Daniel
R. Lee, Pinnacle’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “We’re pleased to
be able to promote so many talented executives from within the Pinnacle
organization to help oversee our growth. We believe in training our own
people and promoting from within whenever possible. These well-earned
promotions exemplify the benefits that our Company’s growth can have on the
career opportunities for all our employees.”