Speakers: United Women of Tribal Gaming; Pam Shaw, Margo Gray, and Sonya Nevaquaya
Topic: Women Empowerment Unity in Leadership.
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About our Chairwoman Pam Shaw, Osage/Ponca/Pottawatomie
After enjoying a 17-year career in the Corporate world, Pam Shaw found her true passion in leading teams and generating revenue in Tribal Gaming. For over 14 years, Pam has excelled in and enjoyed several positions including Marketing Director, Casino General Manager, Director of Guest Service Assurance, Chief of Operations, and her most recent position of Chief Executive Officer. She holds a BS in Business and truly embraces and exemplifies the mission of Tribal Gaming.
Pam is dedicated to the success of this industry as well as the development and support of other women in Tribal Gaming. To this end, she co-founded and is Chairwoman of the United Women of Tribal Gaming organization whose vision is to support, educate, motivate, and encourage other women as they maneuver through their own careers in the industry she loves. Pam chooses to use her own experiences, victories, and challenges to help others find their voice, gain confidence, set and exceed all goals, and help create a pathway for progress for all.
Pam cherishes her family which includes her husband of 30 years, three wonderful sons and their partners, and the light of her life, Granddaughter Lilly. She is a proud Osage Tribal Member and she and her family are very involved culturally as well.
About our Secretary/Treasure Sonya Tate Nevaquaya, Comanche/Choctaw/Chickasaw
Sonya has been involved in Tribal Gaming for over 16 years; her passion for Tribal Gaming has given her a lot of experience and different views of gaming from the perspective of being an employee, a Tribal leader, and a Gaming Board Chairwoman. Over the years as an employee Sonya has gained knowledge, experience, and has excelled in different positions as Cage Supervisor, BlackJack Trainer, Title 31, and Compliance Training Specialist where she gives much credit to her current employer Lucky Star Casino of the Cheyenne & Arapaho Tribes.
In 2018 she was appointed to the Sauk Business Enterprise and also currently serves as Chairwoman of the Board. As a former Tribal leader for the Comanche Nation 2012-2016, she served on the Comanche Gaming Advisory Board and was appointed by the Chairman to revise the Gaming Ordinance. She attended Southwestern Oklahoma State University where she studied Business Administration of Management. Sonya has served on many different Boards in different capacities of her career where it has given her great leadership experience to share with other women.
Sonya is very compassionate about helping others to succeed; she is especially supportive of women in the Tribal Gaming Industry. She is a Co-founder and the Secretary/Treasure of the United Women of Tribal Gaming organization whose vision is also to support, educate, motivate, and encourage other women. Sonya hopes from her career experience that her story can help and relate to other woman in their current gaming careers to succeed and approach their endeavors with a positive compassionate outlook. Through UWTG her goal is give support, a voice, confidence, and create possibilities by helping setting new goals for women in Tribal Gaming.
Sonya loves her family which includes her two sons, and all of her siblings. Sonya feels truly blessed knowing she was raised by parents that instilled in her great love with their teachings. She is a proud enrolled member of the Comanche Nation and she enjoys her cultural ways of dance, song, and language. She is proud to come from a very blessed and talented Nevaquaya family.
About our Vice Chairwoman Margo Gray, Osage
Margo Gray has 21 years of business experience and history in the gaming industry. Starting first as an engineering firm to a consultant, she has been a strong promoter for Native to Native business and championed native women in the gaming industry. Her career spans over 40 years of advocacy in promoting woman in business, gaming, politics and social issues, she is a fierce advocate for not only indigenous women but all women. She is proud to be a Founder of the “United Women In Gaming”.
Margo has been active in board work and was recently appointed to the NIGA International Economic Advisory Board. Key to her service work is her role on the Board of Directors of the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development (NCAIED). Margo is a board member for the American Indian Business Network, and board Member for the National Indian Gaming Association (NIGA). She is an active member of Women Empowering Women for Indian Nations.
She has championed Indigenous women’s issues for over 39 years in her various roles. Gray is a proud Osage businesswoman who has built a profitable business in a traditionally male industry for the past 21 years. Her leadership and determination have won prestigious honors including 2007 American Indian Business of the Year. She was inducted into the “Warrior Women’s Circle” by the Women Empowering Women in Indigenous Nations (WEWIN). The Journal Record’s “50 Making a Difference” recognizing Oklahoma’s leading Women. Margo received the “Badger Award for Tenacity and Perseverance in Business” by the American Indian Business Leaders Association and the “Georgeann Robinson Humanitarian Award” presented by the Oklahoma Federation of Indian Women. Other notable recognitions include: 2005 recipient of the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development’s Indian Business Owner of the Year and 2004 recipient of the National Indian Business Association’s Outstanding National Native American Woman‐Owned Business award. She was featured in “Smart Women Take Risks,” a book by Helene Learner.
Recently Margo has also created Voices and Visions from Indian Country from a talk show into a Podcast in 2019. Margo Gray is President of Margo Gray and Associates and in 2018 was elected to the Osage Nation Minerals Council. She received her education at Northeastern State University, Tahlequah, OK and the Tuck School of Business.