President & Founder
President and Founder of the Simmons Group, Ann Simmons Nicholson is recognized as an expert in Strategic Planning, Human Resources, Organizational Development and Training in non-profit, government and private industry. Clients such as Konami Gaming, Whole Foods, the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, Bally Technologies, US Border Patrol, schools and numerous non-profit organizations have all benefited from Ann’s over 30 years of experience.
Having opened, expanded or transitioned from one owner to another 44 hotel casinos, manufacturers, cruise ships, water parks and furniture marts during her career she has worked with all the major players in the gaming industry including beyond those mentioned above: MGM, Station Casinos, SHFL Entertainment, Bally Technologies, Aristocrat, Scientific Games, Rio, M Resort, Palms & Palms Place, Mandalay Bay, Caesar’s, and numerous Tribal Gaming Entities. Her work has included all areas of strategic talent planning and management including: management and supervisory training, executive coaching, all areas of human resources, employee training and development, public speaking and communications.
Ann has the unique ability to partner with her clients and becomes an invaluable resource to companies seeking her services.
General Counsel and Executive Vice President
Katie Lever serves as General Counsel and Executive Vice President for Scientific Games. In this role, she is responsible for all legal and regulatory matters related to Scientific Games’ multi-faced operations, including management of its legal and intellectual property departments and providing strategic legal advice for the Company’s international and interactive business.
Ms. Lever joined Scientific Games from Bally Technologies, which was acquired by Scientific Games in November 2014. As Senior Vice President of Legal and Compliance and General Counsel at Bally Technologies, Ms. Lever played a key role during the $5.2 billion acquisition. Ms. Lever joined Bally from SHFL entertainment, where she was General Counsel and Executive Vice President and which was acquired by Bally in November 2013 in a $1.3 billion acquisition.
Prior to joining SHFL entertainment in 2011, Ms. Lever was General Counsel and Executive Vice President of Global Cash Access, the gaming industry’s largest cash access provider, and prior to that was a Partner with the Las Vegas law firm Schreck Brignone (now Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck), where she practiced transactional, commercial, and corporate law for many of the largest gaming operators. Before joining Schreck Brignone, Ms. Lever practiced in Canada representing high-tech and bio-tech companies in private and public equity transactions.
She is the President of the International Association of Gaming Advisors (IAGA) and a member of the State Bar of Nevada and The Law Society of British Columbia. She received her law degree from the University of Windsor.