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Penn Nat’l Gaming bolsters its management team

Apr 24, 2001 7:47 AM

Solidifying its management team on both the racing and casino fronts, Penn National Gaming Inc. (PENN) has named Richard Orbann, 48, as its new president and chief operating officer for the company’s racing division.

He joins Kevin DeSanctis, who recently was named president and chief operating officer with responsibility for the company casino operations.

The two will replace retiring president and chief operating officer, Bill Bork.

Orbann, a veteran of more than 30 years experience in the horse racing field, most recently was president and general manager of both Freehold Raceway, the trotting track, and Garden State Park. The properties were owned by Pennwood Inc., a partnership of Penn National and Greenwood Racing, Inc.

Penn National branched out last year from its traditional horse racing roles to expand its Charles Town Racetrack into a racino, with the addition of 1,000 slot machines; and to acquire two Mississippi Gulf Coast casinos.

Jeff Mielke has been appointed director of standards development for the Gaming Standards Association (GSA).

Anthony Sanfilippo has been named president of Harrah’s Entertainment Inc. (HET) Central Division. He replaces Jay Sevigny who will continue as division president of the Rio in Las Vegas.

Ralph Bell has been tabbed by Shuffle Master Gaming Inc. (SHFL) to represent the company in the sale of shufflers, table games and video games. His area will consist of Washington, Idaho and Oregon.

Dave Palermo, former gaming writer for the Las Vegas Review Journal, has been appointed senior editor for Casino Journal and the new Casino Executive Reports by GEM Communications.

Ricky May is the new vice president of sales and marketing for the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. He succeeds Howard Nemenz, who has decided to return to his business in North Carolina.

Atty. Nicholas Amato has left the Trump organization to become senior vice president of Resorts Atlantic City. He is former head of the New Jersey Casino Reinvestment Development Authority & Casino Assoc. Amato replaces John Daniels, who resigned in light of Resorts’ pending sale to Colony Capital.

Amato will rejoin his longtime ally Nicholas Ribis, another former Trump executive who will be Resorts’ vice chairman once the sale has closed.

Richard Waters, whose experience in casino management won for him the title of Gaming Professional of the Year in ’99, has joined the Aladdin Hotel as vice president of casino marketing. He leaves as senior vice president of casino operations for Caesars Palace.