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Ameristar Boards Adds New Member

31 January 2006

LAS VEGAS – (PRESS RELEASE) -- Ameristar Casinos, Inc. (Nasdaq: ASCA) announced today that Luther P. Cochrane has been elected as a member of its Board of Directors. Mr. Cochrane has had a distinguished career of more than 30 years in the construction industry and the legal profession. He is currently Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of BE&K Building Group, Inc., a diversified commercial, hospitality, healthcare, industrial and institutional construction firm, nationally recognized for its design-build expertise. The BE&K Building Group is part of the employee-owned, privately held BE&K, Inc. The Building Group includes nearly 700 people who are responsible for more than $1 billion of projects in 2006. The BE&K Building Group's hospitality and entertainment portfolio includes the SeaWorld of Florida Discovery Cove interactive theme park in Orlando, the Gaylord Palms Resort and Conference Center in Orlando, and the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida, as well as numerous projects for Hilton and Marriott hotels.

Mr. Cochrane has held several other senior executive positions, including Global Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Bovis Lend Lease, a global real estate group providing a full range of construction, development, capital structuring and consulting services. The company operates in 38 countries on six continents, and is one of the world's leading companies in the project management and construction services industry. In the United States, Bovis Lend Lease is the nation's second largest construction manager.

Mr. Cochrane was formerly a senior partner with the Griffin, Cochrane and Marshall law firm in Atlanta, specializing in real estate and construction law.

Ameristar Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Craig H. Neilsen said of the election: "I am very pleased that Luther is joining Ameristar's Board. His many years of executive leadership in the construction industry will bring tremendous strategic guidance to our Board in that important area."

Mr. Cochrane is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He also holds a Juris Doctorate degree, with honors, from the University of North Carolina School of Law at Chapel Hill. He was a member of the University of North Carolina Law Review and was elected to the Order of the Coif. Mr. Cochrane actively serves on boards related to academic and economic development issues, among them the Advisory Council for the Belk College of Business at UNC-Charlotte, the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority and the Levine Children's Hospital Planning and Advisory Committee. He has also recently served on the Board of Visitors for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the UNC Alumni Association Board and the Executive Committee of the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce. Mr. Cochrane is also a member of the Board of Directors and Chair of the Audit Committee of New Dominion Bank. He is the author of numerous publications on construction and construction law matters and has spoken on a variety of real estate and construction topics at such institutions as Georgia Tech and The Wharton School of Finance of the University of Pennsylvania.

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