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September 6, 2002

Governor Ryan Makes Gaming Board Appointments
Former LaSalle County State's Attorney Gary Peterlin Named to Panel; Elzie Higginbottom Appointed Chairman

CHICAGO -- Gov. George H. Ryan has nominated former LaSalle County State's Attorney Gary Peterlin to the Illinois Gaming Board and designated current member Elzie Higginbottom to be chairman of the panel.

Peterlin, 53, of Ogelsby, IL, replaces Gregory Jones, current board member and chairman, and will fill the law enforcement seat on the board.

"Gary Peterlin has a distinguished career as a prosecutor and lawyer. He is a fine public servant and will again bring new energy and enthusiasm to this very demanding job," Gov. Ryan said. "I want to thank Gregory Jones for his excellent service and dedication as board member and chairman. He took on a difficult job and served with integrity as he led the board through complicated issues."

Higginbottom, a board member since July of 2001, will take over as chairman.

"Elzie Higginbottom is a successful business executive and a dedicated public servant. I know he will lead the board with distinction," Gov. Ryan said.

The new appointment is in keeping with the Governor's philosophy to continually infuse the board with new leadership rather than reappoint sitting members. The Governor noted that the Illinois Gaming Board is one of the few boards for which the General Assembly sets three-year terms.

"I firmly believe you must constantly bring new members to the board so that no one gets entrenched," Gov. Ryan said. "I believe it is what the legislature intended and it encourages bringing new ideas to the demanding job of serving on the board."

Peterlin, who is now in private practice, served as the LaSalle County State's Attorney from 1980-1988. He has been active with numerous law enforcement organizations including the National Conference on Missing and Exploited Children and the Illinois Campaign to Protect Our Children.

Current board member and former Judge Tobias Barry was also reappointed. Barry, of LaSalle, IL, who was appointed in November, 2001 to fill the remaining months of the term of Stuart Levine, who resigned. Barry will now be appointed to a full term.

The appointments require confirmation by the Illinois Senate.


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