Responsible for gaming operations at the Seminole Tribe of Florida since 2001, James F. “Jim” Allen, chairman of Hard Rock International and CEO of Seminole Gaming, has guided the development of Seminole Gaming into one of the world’s most profitable gaming entities, with seven casinos located throughout Florida.
For this and a host of other reasons, Allen will be presented with the prestigious Casino Marketing & Technology Lifetime Achievement Award at the 13th annual Casino Marketing & Technology Conference, taking place this month at Paris Las Vegas.
Allen’s illustrious career in commercial and tribal gaming spans more than three decades. He worked his way from the ground-up in Atlantic City to become a key executive at the Trump Organization in the 1980s. He subsequently held executive positions at a number of other leading casino firms, including Park Place Entertainment and Sun International, which operated Atlantis and Mohegan Sun. A former member of the New Jersey Casino Control Commission Task Force on Gaming Regulation, Allen has also lectured on countless casino industry topics at many professional conferences, governmental programs and college campuses, including the New Jersey Governor’s Business Development Conference and both Harvard and Cornell Universities.
This list of accomplishments led Allen to a leadership position in gaming operations for the Seminole Tribe of Florida. Allen led the development team for the highly successful Seminole Hard Rock Hotels & Casinos in Tampa and Hollywood, Fla., which opened in 2004. Subsequently, he became CEO for Seminole gaming, and in the role helped guide successful gaming compact negotiations between the Seminole Tribe, the State of Florida and the U.S. Department of the Interior.
In 2007, Allen oversaw the Seminole Tribe of Florida’s 2007 acquisition of Hard Rock International, the first acquisition of a major international company by a North American Indian tribe. As chairman of Hard Rock International, he has directed the company’s aggressive expansion program in the hotel and hotel-casino sectors. In addition to Tampa and Hollywood, Hard Rock hotels or hotel-casinos are located in exciting locations including Bali, Chicago, Cancun, Ibiza, Las Vegas, Macau and San Diego. New Hard Rock Hotel or hotel-casino projects include Abu Dhabi, Atlanta, Berlin, Dubai, Itapema, Los Cabos, New York City, Tenerife, and Shenzhen and Haikou in China. In addition, Allen oversees all operations for Hard Rock, one of the most globally-recognized brands, known for rock music and its signature cafes, hotels, casinos, memorabilia and live concerts, with venues in 69 countries, including 164 cafes, 23 hotels and 11 casinos.
“We are thrilled to present this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award to Jim Allen, not just for his many professional successes but his underlying work ethic, attention to detail and overall vision; a rare combination,” said Randy Green, group publisher, BNP Media Gaming Group. “The growth of Seminole Gaming and the Hard Rock brand in our industry did not happen by accident. As a Class II tribal gaming operator in 2001, there were no shortage of technological and regulatory hurdles to clear in Florida, and the Hard Rock brand has been leveraged strategically and with great skill. Along the way, Jim has cultivated great relationships with Seminole tribal leadership, his employees and the customers they serve.”
Allen, who will receive the award at a Casino Marketing & Technology luncheon on Wednesday, July 13, joins a distinguished list of casino executive recipients who include Staci Columbo Alonso, Virginia McDowell, Lyle Berman, Ginny Shanks, Bill Harrah and Phil Satre.