Global Gaming Women Launches as Independent Charitable Organization to Support and Develop the Next Generation of Female Leaders in Gaming

Nearly $1.5 million in committed funding secured for high impact
education programs and events

LAS VEGAS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Global Gaming Women, which began in 2011 with the American Gaming
Association as a development program to nurture emerging female leaders
in the gaming industry, has launched as an independent charitable
organization, announced Virginia McDowell, who will retire as Chief
Executive Officer of Isle of Capri Casinos effective April 27, and lead
the new 501(c)(3) as president and board chair.

“Our founding board is very excited about the opportunity to expand and
enhance the considerable work done by the American Gaming Association to
foster stronger relationships between female executives, provide
mentoring and networking opportunities, and deliver targeted educational
programs,” McDowell said. “We have secured nearly $1.5 million in
committed multi-year funding pledges to provide a sustainable structure
for our new organization and to fund educational and grant programs. We
look forward to delivering high impact programs and events on a global
scale that support, inspire and influence the development of women in
the gaming and lottery industry.”

2016 initiatives for the organization include:

  • Providing scholarships to over 100 women to attend GGW leadership
    development conferences in the East Coast, Midwest and Southern gaming
    markets, as well as the MGM Women’s Leadership Conference
  • Launching ten Lean-In mentoring circles at gaming companies across the
    United States
  • Establishing a career advisory board and dedicated mentors for GGW
    program graduates
  • Expanding the W Development Conference in Las Vegas to include an
    alumni conference and the introduction of a public speaking coaching
  • Participating in programs, panels and networking events at major
    conferences, including Ice, Totally Gaming, National Indian Gaming
    Tradeshow and Convention, Southern Gaming Summit, East Coast Gaming
    Congress, North American Association of State and Local Provincial
    Lotteries Annual Conference, and expanded programming at the Global
    Gaming Expo (G2E).

“MGM Resorts has long been an advocate of advancing women in the
workplace, and the contributions of female gaming professionals have
immeasurably strengthened our company and our industry,” said Jim
Murren, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of MGM Resorts and AGA
Board Chairman. “We look forward to working with Global Gaming Women to
further expand the leadership of women in the gaming industry,” Murren

In addition to McDowell, the founding Global Gaming Women board members
are: Patty Becker, CEO Patricia Becker & Associates; Diana Bennett,
Chairman of the Board Paragon Gaming; Ginny Shanks, EVP and Chief
Administrative Officer Pinnacle Entertainment; Ann Hoff, General Manager
Excalibur (MGM Resorts); Katie Lever, former General Counsel Scientific
Games; Staci Alonso, SVP Marketing and CMO Station Casinos; Holly
Gagnon, CEO Chumash Tribal Enterprises; Sarah Jackson, SVP Human
Resources Isle of Capri; Eileen Moore, President of The Cromwell, The
LINQ and Flamingo Las Vegas; Tina Kilmer, VP Product Compliance
Scientific Games; Christie Eickelman, VP Marketing GLI; Maureen Keenan,
VP Finance Seminole Hard Rock Tampa; Ann Simmons Nicholson, President &
CEO The Simmons Group; and, Phyllis Gilland, SVP & General Counsel
American Casino & Entertainment Properties.

The companies who have made founding commitments to fund GGW include a
coalition of major commercial and tribal gaming companies, private
donors and major industry suppliers: MGM Resorts International, Seminole
Gaming, American Gaming Association, Pinnacle Entertainment, Caesars
Entertainment, Scientific Games, Rush Street Gaming, Isle of Capri
Casinos, Inc, Penn National Gaming, Station Casinos Inc., Boyd Gaming,
IGT and Paragon Gaming.

“AGA and the dedicated women who have helped lead GGW initiatives over
the past five years have made tremendous progress growing an idea into a
successful program that benefits more than 2,500 gaming employees across
the industry,” said Geoff Freeman, AGA President and CEO. “The new
structure will allow GGW to take its work to the next level and provide
significant value to countless women in gaming.”

Companies who wish to become involved with programs or to sponsor Global
Gaming Events should contact Katarina Murzl at 702-336-1453.


Global Gaming Women
Katarina Murzl, 702-336-1453