New general manager named for Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady

Guests try their luck at Rivers Casino in Schenectady in September 2020.

Guests try their luck at Rivers Casino in Schenectady in September 2020.

SCHENECTADY — A casino industry veteran has been named general manager of Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady.

Rick Richards began his career in Nevada more than 40 years ago and most recently was vice president and general manager of Las Vegas-based Station Casinos.

He has received approval of the New York State Gaming Commission and will start his new role Friday, parent company Rush Street Gaming announced Thursday.

Rush Street CEO Greg Carlin said in a news release: “We’re excited to welcome Rick to the Rush Street family. He’s learned the casino and hotel business from the ground up with particular expertise around guest experience, team building, and performance — all of which are key areas of alignment and strength for Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady.”

As GM, Richards will oversee all of Rush Street’s operations at Mohawk Harbor, both the casino and The Landing Hotel.

He will be the fourth general manager for the property since it opened four years ago.

Mary Cheeks oversaw the lengthy setup and training process that led up to Rivers Schenectady opening in February 2017 but departed as general manager in November 2017. 

Assistant GM Justin Moore took over until Rob Long was appointed GM in December 2017.

Long left Rivers Schenectady in March 2019 to run what was then called SugarHouse Casino, a Rush Street property later renamed Rivers Philadelphia.

Moore was named acting GM of Rivers Schenectady after Long’s departure, then promoted to GM in July 2019.

Moore left Rivers Schenectady in April 2021 to become GM of Rivers Philadelphia.

Jeff Cutri, vice president of gaming operations at Rivers Schenectady, was named acting GM upon Moore’s departure and will return to that role now that Richards is GM.

Before a six-month COVID shutdown in 2020, Rivers Schenectady had a workforce of about 1,050. It reopened with limited operations and a smaller staff in September and has been rebuilding staff, operations and revenue back since then.

It took in $167 million in gross gaming revenue — gross profit after paying gamblers their winnings — in fiscal year 2019-2020. The largest single source of revenue was the $1.4 billion in credits played on the casino’s 1,150 slot machines.

Categories: Business, News, Schenectady County

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