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Gila River Gaming names new Chief Executive Officer

3 February 2017

(PRESS RELEASE) -- Gila River Gaming Enterprises, Inc., operator of three leading casino properties in Arizona, announced yesterday that Kenneth Manuel has been selected as the Enterprises' new Chief Executive Officer. Manuel is the first member of the Gila River Indian Community to hold this position permanently. The announcement comes after an intensive search and selection process by Gila River Gaming Enterprises' Interim Oversight and Planning Committee, consisting of five Gila River Indian Community tribal council members.

"The enterprise is honored to have Mr. Manuel as a leader, who many consider a mentor and highly recognized Gila River Indian Community member," said Teaya Vicente, Public Relations Manager for Gila River Gaming Enterprises, Inc. "We are confident in Mr. Manuel's ability to propel our vision to be Arizona's first choice in casino entertainment for both work and play."

Manuel's path to the Chief Executive Officer role included serving in nearly every aspect of the business for the past 22 years. He began his career as a slot manager in 1994 and was immediately promoted to acting slot director. During Manuel's career, he spent a year in a management position servicing the Sheraton Grand Resort and Spa at Wild Horse Pass, rejoining as a member of the Gila River Gaming Enterprises Inc. Board of Directors, fulfilling the role as Board President. He was a member of the Casino Expansion Owners Team from 2007 to 2013, Chairman of the Enterprise's Expense Committee, and a member of the mentorship committee. Continuing his successful career, he joined the Enterprise's Pathways Mentorship Program as Assistant Chief Executive Officer.

During Manuel's tenure, Gila River Gaming Enterprises, Inc. has experienced unprecedented growth and development, which has contributed to the long-term sustainability and progress of the Gila River Indian Community. Throughout his career, he has been key in the creation and completion of all three gaming properties. He was instrumental in the completion of Vee Quiva Hotel and Casino, which opened in July of 2013, and the Lone Butte Casino renovation project in 2015.

"It is an immense honor to have been chosen to serve in the role of Chief Executive Officer," Manuel said. "The casinos are the primary source of support for the Gila River Indian Community. I see incredible growth potential as premier entertainment destinations and furthermore as great places for employees to grow and develop their skills."

Manuel participated in the Executive Development Program at the University of Nevada at Reno. He continued his education, earning certification from Cornell University's General Managers Program and a Bachelor's of Science in Business Management from the University of Phoenix.

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