US resort group elevates development executive ahead of expansion

Cordish Gaming Group, the gaming resort division of Baltimore-headquartered The Cordish Companies, has made a key executive appointment as the company prepares for the expansion of its Live! Casino brand.

Joe Billhimer, who has served as executive vice president Pennsylvania casinos for Cordish Gaming since 2020, has been elevated to the position of chief operating and development officer. 

Leading expansion

Prior to his new role, Billhimer was responsible for leading the company’s expansion into the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania with the development of two new Live! Casino properties in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia.

He will now oversee operations at all Live! Casino properties in the Cordish Gaming portfolio, including Pennsylvania and Maryland, while identifying and developing new growth opportunities in other gaming jurisdictions.

Hurricane recovery

Billhimer has more than 35 years of industry experience. In addition to his time with Cordish Gaming, he has served as chief operating officer of Eldorado Resorts, in Reno, Nevada; and president of MTR Gaming, based in Wexford, Pennsylvania, prior to its merger with Eldorado Resorts.

He also served as CEO of Premier Entertainment, where he was named Casino Journal’s ‘Executive of the Year’ for his efforts in developing, and redeveloping, the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Biloxi after its destruction by Hurricane Katrina. Additionally, he has held leadership positions at Foundation Gaming Group, Caesars Entertainment’s Grand Casino Resort in Gulfport, Mississippi, and within the same state, Casino Magic Bay in St. Louis.

Pursuing development

Rob Norton, president, Cordish Gaming Group, said: “As the company prepares to experience exponential growth in the coming years, this appointment positions us to maximise results at our existing operations, while pursuing development and management opportunities in other gaming jurisdictions.”

One property already under development is Live! Casino & Hotel Virginia in Petersburg, Virginia. The mixed use site would encompass 200 luxury hotel rooms, with completion scheduled for 2024.