Cordish Gaming Group, the gaming division of the Cordish Companies, announced Tuesday a series of "key" executive appointments as the company targets the expansion of its Live! Casino brand. All appointments are effective immediately.
Joe Billhimer, who has served as Executive Vice President/PA Casinos for Cordish Gaming since 2020, has been elevated to the position of Chief Operating & Development Officer. He also maintained duties as General Manager of Live! Casino & Hotel Philadelphia.
Prior to his new role, Billhimer, who has more than 35 years of industry experience, was responsible for leading the company's expansion into the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania with the development of two new Live! Casino properties in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia.
He will now oversee operations at all Live! Casino properties in the Cordish Gaming portfolio, including Pennsylvania and Maryland, while "identifying and developing new growth opportunities in other gaming jurisdictions."
In addition to his time with Cordish Gaming, he has served as Chief Operating Officer of Eldorado Resorts; and President of MTR Gaming, prior to its merger with Eldorado Resorts. He also served as Chief Executive Officer of Premier Entertainment. Moreover, he held leadership positions at Foundation Gaming Group, Caesars Entertainment's Grand Casino Resort in Gulfport, and Casino Magic Bay in St. Louis.
Leading the team at Live! Philadelphia now will be Craig Clark, who has been named Executive Vice President & General Manager. Under his new role, Craig Clark will assume oversight of all day-to-day management and operations of the property, and "further elevate Live! Philadelphia's profile in the community" through expanded partnerships and support of business, tourism and non-profit organizations.
Clark brings over 30 years of experience within the gaming industry to his new role. He joined the Live! team in 2020 as Vice President of Finance for the opening of Live! Casino Pittsburgh, and then served as COO of Seneca Gaming Corporation.
He has additional experience in the Commonwealth having served as General Manager for Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His career also includes leadership roles as President of Hard Rock Ottawa; General Manager of Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula, California; and Senior Vice President and General Manager of Turning Stone Resort and Casino in Verona, New York.
Lastly, Ryan Eller will serve as Executive Vice President & General Manager for the company's flagship property, Live! Casino & Hotel Maryland. Eller is a U.S. Naval Academy and Harvard Business School graduate with nearly 20 years in the gaming and hospitality industries, who will now lead operations at the AAA Four Diamond-rated hotel, luxury gaming and entertainment destination.
In his new role, Eller will assume oversight of the day-to-day management and operations of the property, which is entering its second decade "as one of the largest commercial casinos in the country." He will step into the role focused on driving growth, while enhancing customer service and encouraging team member engagement.
Eller most recently served as President of GH Holdings in Texas. Prior to that position, he was the President, CEO and Director at Empire Resorts in New York. He has also held leadership positions at gaming destinations throughout his career, including Genting Americas/Resort World in New York, Pearl Rivers Resorts in Jackson, PCI Gaming in Mobile, and Caesars Entertainment in Memphis. He has also served as Chairman of New York Gaming Commission.
Rob Norton, President of Cordish Gaming Group, commented: "As the company prepares to experience exponential growth in the coming years, these appointments position us to maximize results at our existing operations, while pursuing development and management opportunities in other gaming jurisdictions."
"Joe, Craig and Ryan are well suited to maintain the same level of excellence and customer service our guests have come to expect at Live! Casinos and Hotels," Norton concluded.