TORONTO, ON, June 20, 2019 – Every year, The Canadian gaming industry honours the achievements of members within its community. The 2019 Canadian Gaming Summit in Edmonton will recognize one outstanding member in its community for their exceptional leadership and contributions to the industry.
In addition, four members of the First Nation’s gaming community will be honoured for their positive impacts on the gaming industry as well as recognize the remarkable leaders and role models within the First Nations community.
Industry Leadership and Outstanding Contribution
The Canadian Gaming Industry Awards were first introduced 20 years ago to recognize the excellence in achievements, contributions and leadership within the gaming industry.
Congratulations to John Dominelli, the recipient of this year’s Industry Leadership and Outstanding Contribution Award.
As founder and CEO of NRT Technology, John Dominelli has been an instrumental player in developing innovative technologies which have transformed the gaming industry. Since founding NRT Technology in 1993, John has developed leading technologies such as the first ticket redemption kiosks and jackpot attendant kiosks, as well as numerous other innovations utilized by casinos and millions of people daily. NRT Technologies has grown drastically over the years, acquiring multiple technology companies and has developed to become the number one gaming kiosk provider in the world.
John’s love for solving problems faced by the gaming industry and his revolutionary solutions drove him to develop one of “Canada’s 50 Best Managed Companies” for the past 11 years and John has duly been recognized as E& Y Entrepreneur of the Year in 2005.
Today, John has grown NRT Technologies into an international corporation with hundreds of employees, five global locations, and over 100 million transactions annually serving more than 750 customers, including the World’s Top 25 Largest Casinos. John continues to be an exemplary leader in the industry, revolutionizing the technology landscape and building a multi-national leading corporation.
The Canadian Gaming Industry Awards are sponsored by the Canadian Gaming Association.
First Nation Canadian Gaming Award Winners
The 10thAnnual First Nation Gaming Awards honour the outstanding accomplishments and contributions of First Nations people employed by a First Nations casino within Canada and the continued development and improvements within their operations.
Congratulations to the following First Nation Canadian Gaming Award recipients:
First Nation Canadian Gaming Community Service Award
Since 2014, Tracey Aginas has dedicated herself to bettering her community in any way possible. Between her position as a childcare worker and her battle with a rare illness, Tracey has never deviated from her devotion to the Alexis community. As a member of the Nothern Isga Foundation’s board, Tracey has shown an unparalleled dedication to serving her community by consistently volunteering her time to attend special meetings with regulators and planning sessions, in addition to attending all monthly meetings. Despite extenuating circumstances, Tracey never missed a meeting in order to ensure the NIF had a quorum of directors, enabling constant benefits for the Nations members.
Speaking to Tracey’s dedication, Kathleen Alexis, CEO of Northern Isga Foundation Charity, says “Tracey rose above her illness because she is a very caring and appreciative young lady, that wants to make a difference for the betterment in our community.”
First Nation Canadian Gaming Leadership Award
Since joining the team at Casino Rama in 2004, Lise Kwekkeboom has been an instrumental part of the marketing operations. Lise’s exceptional collaboration skills and her dedication to the success of the organization are clearly exemplified in her daily role as well as the numerous initiatives she has taken on and lead to success. Glenn Trickey, VP of Gaming Operations at casino Rama, describes Lise’s leadership style as enthusiastic, customer oriented, open minded, and effective. Lise constantly goes above and beyond her role as Director of Marketing Services by taking on numerous additional initiatives and never misses the opportunities to engage with customers and staff on the floor. As a result of Lise’s exceptional leadership and dedication, Casino Rama has seen revenue enhancements and significant cost savings in many of the initiatives Lise takes on.
First Nation Canadian Gaming Lifetime Achievement Award
John Blair Morin
Blair Morin has been an integral part of the gaming industry since 1991 where he started his career as a Blackjack dealer at The Palace Casino in Edmonton. Today, Blair sits on the Board of Directors of the River Cree Resort & Casino. Blair’s dedication to the gaming industry and the Enoch Cree Nation spans throughout his entire career, supporting and leading initiatives to grow and improve the industry and his community. During his tenure, Blair worked to open the first First Nation’s Casino in Alberta and opened a Casino Dealer School, among many other successful initiatives. Blair’s outstanding work has been repeatedly recognized by his community and he has been awarded three Aboriginal Role Model awards: The Leadership award in 2005, the Economic Development Award in 2009 and the Community Involvement Award in 2016.
Over the last 39 years Blair has dedicated himself to the gaming industry and his home community, playing an instrumental part in the success of all initiatives he takes on.
First Nation Canadian Gaming Employee of the Year Award
Bob Commanda has been part of the Casino Rama team since 2001 as a leading technician. Since day one Bob has been an efficient and hardworking technician, who not only leads with proficiency but also with patience, care and understanding. Bob is known for his hands-on approach to leading the technicians, often working side by side with them on the floor and always taking the time to ensure all of his workers not only know how to operate the machines, but also understand how they work. Throughout all of his work, Bob retains his strong belief of “when you know how and understand why, you can repair anything.” With this mindset, Bob has ensured the success of all his technicians and has contributed to improving Casino Rama’s operations. In addition to his hard work training technicians and improving the quality of machines, Bob also developed a tracking program for Casino Rama to ensure continued regulatory compliance. Bob’s expertise and commitment to the success of both the casino and all its technicians has made him an invaluable member Casino Rama’s team.
The First Nation Canadian Gaming Awards are sponsored by Casino Rama and Miller Thompson LLP.
About the Canadian Gaming Association
The Canadian Gaming Association (CGA) is a national trade association that works to advance the evolution of Canada’s gaming industry. The association’s mandate is to promote the economic value of gaming in Canada; use research, innovation, and best practices to help the industry advance; and create productive dialogue among stakeholders.
The CGA is co-owner of both the Canadian Gaming Summit, Canada’s premier annual conference and exhibition for gaming professionals, as well as Canadian Gaming Business magazine. Visit www.canadiangaming.cato learn more about the CGA and gaming in Canada.
For further information please contact:
Paul Burns, Canadian Gaming Association