Full House shakes up leadership as Pinnacle's Lee takes over as CEO and board nearly doubles

Industries Associated Press

The CEO and chairman of Full House Resorts will step down and Daniel Lee, the former chief executive at Pinnacle Entertainment, will take over in a settlement with investors of the casino and hotel operator.

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Activist investors that included Lee requested a special shareholders meeting in October in a bid to shake up the company's leadership and it was announced that a sale was a possibility. In addition to Lee, investors seeking changes included Craig Thomas and Bradley Tirpak.

The company said Monday that CEO and Chairman Andre Hilliou will step down and that the board will almost double to nine members.

Chief Operating Officer Mark Miller resigned along with Hilliou, giving the Las Vegas casino six open board seats. Those seats will be filled by Lee, W.H. Baird Garrett, Raymond Hemmig, Ellis Landau, Tirpak and Thomas.

Full House Resorts Inc. runs the Rising Star Riverboat Casino in Rising Sun, Indiana; the Silver Slipper Casino in Hancock County, Mississippi, and Stockman's Casino in Fallon, Nevada. The company, which also operates a Hyatt in Incline Village, Nevada, under a lease agreement, said Monday that it continues to look of its strategic options.

"I would like to thank the incumbent Full House board for working with us to position the company for future success," said Lee in a printed statement. "I would also like to thank Andre and Mark for their many years of service with the company and wish them well in their future endeavors."

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The board's compensation committee approved a grant to Lee for an option to purchase 943,834 shares at a per-share exercise price equal to the closing price on the grant date. Lee's option is scheduled to vest over a four-year period, with 25 percent vesting on the first anniversary of the grant date, and the remaining 75 percent vesting in substantially equal installments over the following three years.