ATLANTIC CITY — Redenia Gilliam-Mosee, the former president of the city’s Boys and Girls Club and the first African-American woman vice president in the resort’s casino industry, will receive one of the highest honors in the gaming industry.
Gilliam-Mosee will posthumously be inducted into the American Gaming Association’s Gaming Hall of Fame during an event at The Venetian Las Vegas on Wednesday. Gilliam-Mosee died on New Year’s Day 2010 at the age of 60.
“She was the face, the voice and the conscience of the gaming industry in its earliest days in Atlantic City,” said Michael Pollock, managing director of Spectrum Gaming Group.
The Gaming Hall of Fame, since its inception in 1989, recognizes leaders with gaming’s highest honor who have distinguished themselves through significant contributions to the industry. This year, a five-person selection committee of industry stakeholders reviewed a number of nominations.
Born in Newark, Gilliam-Mosee and her family moved to Atlantic City when she was 10.
Gilliam-Mosee — who worked as a chambermaid in high school — later left the resort to earn her bachelor's degree in economics and political science from Wilberforce University in Ohio, and a master's degree in city and regional planning from Rutgers University. She then taught as an assistant professor in the Planning and Community Development department of Livingston College, on the Piscataway campus of Rutgers University, from 1971 to 1979.
Gilliam-Mosee got her hard work and dedication from her mother, said state Superior Court Judge Nelson Johnson
“Her mother expected excellence from her children,” said Johnson. “She was smart, tough and at the same time classy. She was special.”
She returned in 1979 to work as a consultant for Bally's Atlantic City, where she was an executive for more than 20 years.
“It’s an overdue honor,” said state Sen. Jim Whelan, D-Atlantic, a former Atlantic City mayor, of her induction. “Icon is the right word to describe her. She was proud of growing up here and being an Atlantic City High School graduate. She acted as a bridge between the city and casino industry, something that is lacking right now.”
Despite her success, Gilliam-Mosee always worked to make the city a better place, Pollock said. During her tenure, she helped leverage millions of dollars from the casino industry on behalf of community initiatives.
“Her commitment to the city was unquestioned, and as a result, her company – Bally’s – was seen as sharing that commitment,” Pollock said. “She was seemingly everywhere in those early days, and it is no exaggeration to say that she showed other gaming executives in other markets how to connect to their communities. In other words, her legacy still exists.”
She spearheaded a $3 million upgrade for the Boys and Girls Club, which doubled its capacity when the new facility opened more than 15 years ago; and a project called Jacobs Family Terrace, the city's first casino-sponsored housing project; and HOPE: Homeownership Opportunities for Performing Employees, a program dedicated to helping Bally's Atlantic City workers buy their own homes.
“”Her nature was to give back and make sure that young people coming up had opportunities,” Whelan said. “She cared about the future.”