Wild Rose’s Timmons to keynote Midwest Partnership annual dinner

Wild Rose Entertainment president Tom Timmons will keynote Midwest Partnership’s 2015 annual dinner Thursday, Jan. 22, at the Lake Panorama National Conference Center in Panora.

Midwest Partnership is a collaborative economic-development effort to facilitate the retention, expansion and attraction of businesses to create jobs and improve quality of life in Adair, Audubon, Greene and Guthrie Counties.

RSVPs are requested to Sarah Gomez, executive director of Midwest Partnership. She may be contacted at 515-523-1262  or through email at sgomez@midwestpartnership.com There is a charge for the meal.

Social hour begins at 5:45 pm. Dinner is served at 6:30 pm and the annual meeting begins at 7 pm. A business update will be presented as well as the Guy Powell Award and Entrepreneur of the Year Award. The evening will conclude with guest speaker, Tom Timmons.

Timmons will discuss how casinos—and Wild Rose specifically—partner with other organizations to bring about economic development in Iowa. He’ll start with a brief history of gaming in Iowa.

About Wild Rose Entertainment: With freshly minted approval from state regulators June 12 Wild Rose Entertainment projected an August 2015 opening for a $40-million Jefferson casino-and-entertainment complex. The project, now well into construction, remains on schedule.

The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission voted 3-2 to approve a gaming license for Grow Greene County Gaming Corp., the nonprofit associated with the development of the casino. That follows a county referendum in August 2013 in which 75 percent of voters approved bringing gaming to Greene County.

Wild Rose estimates it will hire employees for 275 positions. The total annual payroll and benefits package is projected at $7 million. A job fair will be scheduled this winter in Jefferson.

Gary Kirke, Wild Rose Entertainment CEO, advocated the project for more than a year as the “economic opportunity of a lifetime” for Greene County.

Mike Couch, most recently the director of gaming for Gulfstream Park, a nationally regarded casino and horse-racing facility located between Miami and Fort Lauderdale, FL, will oversee operations.

Grow Greene County Gaming Corporation, the non-profit associated with the casino is expected to make up to $1.5 million in local contributions annually, including an estimated $300,000 to efforts in Greene’s contiguous counties.

About Tom Timmons: As president and COO for Wild Rose Entertainment, Timmons directs corporate operations and financial performance as well as driving the company’s growth and expansion strategy.

Widely regarded as one of the foremost leaders in the state’s casino and racing industry, Timmons began his gaming career in 1989 during the earliest days of Iowa gaming.

He serves as the secretary of the Iowa Gaming Association board of directors and is the former executive director of the Iowa Greyhound Association.

Timmons formerly worked as chief financial officer, chief operating officer and general manager of Prairie Meadows Racetrack and Casino in Des Moines, during which time he implemented and oversaw the nation’s first horse racing and slot machine venue. He held the position of assistant general manager at Lakeside Casino in Osceola and was promoted to general manager before leaving to join Wild Rose.

Timmons graduated with a bachelor’s degree from Drake University. His community involvement includes serving nine years on the PCM Community School District board, four of those years as president.

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