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Snoqualmie Casino Appoints New CEO, After $14M CEO Buyout in February

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Back in February, inner conflict among the Snoqualmie tribal council triggered the unexpected $14 million buyout of its former casino CEO Mike Barozzi's employment contract, generating outrage among some tribal members. The veteran casino manager had served as an essential part of the tribe’s pitch to investors, stated, helping them pull in $330 million in financing for the Washington casino’s construction and opening in 2007, reported The Seattle Times.

But the February 13 tribal council vote ended his career at Snoqualmie Casino, the closest gaming facility to Seattle, Washington. The council settled at an amount lower than the $19.5 million he had requested.

On May 4, the casino announced the appointment of Jon T. Jenkins as its CEO, although he officially began his executive role on April 18. He assumed the position after more than 30 years in the gaming industry, half of which has been spent in association with tribal casinos, according to a casino press release.

In his most recent position, Jenkins served nearly 14 years as president and CEO of the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community's gaming facilities, including two Scottsdale, Arizona locations of Casino Arizona and the tribe's most recent enterprise Talking Stick Resort, which opened in Scottsdale in 2010.

Also in Arizona, Jenkins developed and operated the Apache Gold Casino Resort for the San Carlos Apache Tribe.

In 1997, he co-founded the Miami, Florida-based Game Plan, Inc., a public company that managed gaming services for the two Menominee Nation casinos near Green Bay, Wisconsin.

“It is with much excitement and anticipation that I accept this new position,” Jenkins said in a statement. “I have admired the Snoqualmie property success, and enjoyed knowing many of the Snoqualmie tribal members. It is truly a privilege to join such a wonderful organization and community.”

Mary-Anne Hinzman, Vice-Chair of the Snoqualmie Indian Tribe, also commented in the press release, “We have known Jon for a number of years and admire his management style, as well as his respect for our culture and traditions.”