BUFFALO, N.Y. (May 19, 2008) – Delaware North Companies has promoted James W. Simms to president and general manager of Wheeling Island Hotel-Casino-Racetrack, the largest operation of the company’s nearly $800 million gaming and entertainment enterprise.
President of Delaware North Companies Gaming & Entertainment William J. Bissett made the announcement today, crediting Simms’ marketing management experience with several gaming properties and his record of performance at Delaware North with putting him at the top of a list of well-qualified internal and external candidates who sought the position.
"Since Jim joined Delaware North in 2006, he has consistently exceeded his marketing goals at Wheeling Island, and further, demonstrated the leadership qualities that are needed at the senior-executive level of an organization," Bissett said.
Simms came to Delaware North with more than a decade of experience in senior marketing positions with gaming properties in the United States and Canada, including the Majestic Star in northern Indiana, Ameristar in northern Nevada, Bally’s and Paris Las Vegas, and Casino Rama in Toronto, Canada. In little more than two years at Wheeling Island, his efforts contributed to the popular regional destination’s bringing in record revenue and surpassing its financial plan by millions of dollars, despite a new competitive market structure.
The York University graduate, who holds a bachelor’s degree in economics and a master’s degree in business administration, has also been honored by many of his communities and organizations. At the same time, he has lent his talents to making them stronger. He was a regional chairman for the United Way of Upper Valley of Ohio in 2006.
"The gaming industry is changing at a rapid pace. Jim has excellent market insight and vast knowledge that help him understand where it is going and how Delaware North should position itself to stay at the forefront," Bissett said. "His vision for the future of Wheeling Island is perhaps what sets him apart from the many impressive candidates we considered for the position."