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The Next Level Podcasts

Add our podcast into your Spotify and Apple queue to hear the latest insights from industry leaders.

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Heather Jimenez, Learning & Development Manager for San Manuel

Heather Jimenez is the Learning & Development Manager for San Manuel and has dedicated over 13 years to team building, educational advancement, and employee retention. In this episode she discussed the power of self-awareness, how to build relationships to maximize team efforts, and her passion to serve others.

Episode # 34
Heather Jimenez, Learning & Development Manager for San Manuel
Melanie Johnson, Director of HR, San Manuel Band of Mission Indians

Melanie Johnson has had an expansive career across hospitality as a people-first leader. Serving most of her career in operations, Melanie brings a unique perspective on the role of HR and how leaders can be successful in today's environment. In this episode, we discuss retention, people development, having conversations with your team, and so much more!

Episode # 33
Melanie Johnson, Director of HR, San Manuel Band of Mission Indians
Drew Dixon, VP of Entertainment Operations

Drew Dixon has made a life's work putting on some of the most amazing shows throughout the world. Drew currently is the VP of Entertainment Operations at Yaamava' Resort & Casino at San Manuel. In this episode he discusses tips on how to succeed in the entertainment business and how a heart of service is at the core of all meaningful event

Episode # 32
Drew Dixon, VP of Entertainment Operations
Margie Ferree Jones, Interim dean of The Collins College of Hospitality Management

Perhaps best known as “the wine professor”, Dr. Jones is a certified wine educator (CWE) and a certified sommelier (CS). She has taught courses in strategic leadership, marketing, special events, food & beverage, and hotel/resort planning & development.

Episode # 31
Margie Ferree Jones, Interim dean of The Collins College of Hospitality Management
Kate White, Corporate VP of Business Intelligence – Penn National Gaming

Kate is one of the emerging leaders in gaming with a proven track record of success with innovation & business intelligence. In this conversation, we do a deep dive into emerging AI, the changing landscape for operators in gaming, tips to optimize business outcomes, quilting, and much more!

Episode # 30
Kate White, Corporate VP of Business Intelligence – Penn National Gaming
Afsi Bird, VP of Hotel Operations – Yaamava’ Resort & Casino at San Manuel

Afsi Bird has 30+ years in the hospitality industry and has been a leader at providing service excellence at properties across the globe. In this candid discussion, Afsi provides insight on what is required to build a culture of service, lessons from early in her career, tips to team building, and much more!

Episode # 29
Afsi Bird, VP of Hotel Operations – Yaamava’ Resort & Casino at San Manuel
Bronwen Gregg, Senior Account Manager at Insight Global | President of WISE Las Vegas

Bronwen Gregg, one of CDC Gaming Report’s 2023 “10 Women Rising in Gaming”, leads the Gaming & Casinos portfolio for Insight Global, one of North America’s largest Talent Solutions firms. Bronwen’s biggest personal passion is advocating for equality, especially gender equality in the US workforce. She currently serves as President of WISE (Women in Sports & Events) Las Vegas as well as Membership Co-Chair and Lean In Moderator of GGW (Global Gaming Women). In this episode, we discuss Bronwen’s career story, what fuels her non-profit work, the qualities of great leaders, GGW, what a toxic culture looks like, and much more!

Episode # 28
Bronwen Gregg, Senior Account Manager at Insight Global | President of WISE Las Vegas
Lori Ware, SVP of Casino Finance at Yaamava’ Resort & Casino

Lori Ware is the SVP of Finance at Yaamava’ Resort & Casino, the 2nd most visited property in all of California. This podcast discusses the power of asking for help, a deep love of math, how to communicate data, and more!

Episode # 27
Lori Ware, SVP of Casino Finance at Yaamava’ Resort & Casino
Cynthia Kiser Murphy, GM of Palms Casino Resort

CKM is one of the most respected leaders in the industry and currently oversees the Palms in Las Vegas. In this special podcast, we dive into her career story, how to spot talent, key nuggets for upcoming leaders, and the exciting opportunities with the iconic Palms property.

Episode # 26
Cynthia Kiser Murphy, GM of Palms Casino Resort