2017: Janie Dillard, Executive Officer of Operations, Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, Division of Commerce
Janie Dillard began her career with the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma in 1982 as a secretary for Community Health. In 1984 she moved to the Women, Infant and Children Program (WIC) where she was quickly promoted to Director the next year. In 1987 Janie transferred to the newly opened Choctaw Bingo Palace as a Floor Manager. This move set her roots in the gaming industry.
Choctaw Indian Highstakes Bingo opened its doors in 1987. In 1990 Janie was named General Manager of Choctaw Highstakes Bingo. Throughout the late 90’s and early years in 2000 the Choctaw Nation expanded it’s gaming operations throughout it’s boundries of Southeastern Oklahoma, with Janie heading expansion efforts as Director of Gaming for the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. In October 2001, she was named Executive Director of Gaming for the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, a position she held for 14 years. October 2015 she moved into the newly developed, Choctaw Nation Division of Commerce, as Executive Officer of Operations.
Janie was instrumental in her Tribe’s compact negotiations with the State of Oklahoma. The Oklahoma State Gaming Compact was signed in 2004.
In 2009 the Choctaw Nation aggressively expanded their gaming enterprises with new construction and the opening of three new casinos within it’s boundaries in Southeastern Oklahoma. In 2010 The Tribe opened its newest casino Choctaw Casino Resort in Durant that concluded a $300 million dollar expansion budget. Janie was involved in every aspect of the expansion projects and celebrated with the great Choctaw Nation in finishing all expansion projects debt free.
Janie has served as an Officer for the Oklahoma Indian Gaming Association for the last 18 years. In 1994 she was one of the founders of our first OIGA Tradeshow and Conference at the Choctaw Nation owned Arrowhead Resort. The meager vendor count was 12 and attendees where no more than 50. OIGA was small but had a vision. That vision was to bring the products and workshops to the people in Oklahoma gaming that could not afford to travel to the “Big” shows out of state. That vision was realized and today OIGA no longer can tout their show as the “Best Little Show in Indian Gaming”. Now in its 21st year, OIGA has grown to be one of the premier Gaming Tradeshows in the industry.
Janie received the 2010 OIGA Warriors Award for her lifetime achievement as a champion in the cause of Oklahoma Indian Gaming. She was recognized again in 2011 by Casino Enterprise Management for her outstanding professionalism, perseverance, drive, commitment and mentorship by honoring her with 1 of the 11 “2010 Great Women of Gaming Proven Leader Awards”.
Janie Dillard now leads the business operations for the Division of Commerce and oversees a budget of over $455 million.
Janie is a Tribal Member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma and resides in Caney, Oklahoma with her husband.