Caesars’ Newest Empire

Bouncing back from bankruptcy, Caesars focuses on building new developments—and rebuilding its culture

Howard Tribble, Caesars Entertainment

With more than 40 years of experience in contracting and construction in various industries, Howard Tribble has a history of working his way up the ranks. Starting as a concrete contractor in Chicago and later working on commercial and multi-dwelling high rises for family-owned businesses, Tribble’s recent advancement to senior VP of design and construction at Caesars Entertainment is only the latest in his diverse, multifaceted career. Having recently recovered from bankruptcy reorganization, Caesars is forging ahead in a new direction—with Tribble playing a pivotal role.

Tribble was recruited by Caesars in early 2017, and he saw the move as the next logical step for his career in construction and design. Tribble had spent the previous 12 years in design roles for smaller gaming and leisure companies like Station Casinos and Warner Gaming, which meant that Caesars’ size was a change—but a welcome one. “Warner was fine, but relatively small; there were about one and a half dozen people there, with a smaller company and smaller business model,” Tribble says. While he values his time at Warner, he wanted to move on. “After six years there, I wanted to get back into bigger things,” he explains. With 65,000 employees and 54 properties across the world, Caesars granted his wish.

At Caesars, as with his other work in gaming and leisure, Tribble must take into account many unique design and construction considerations. “You work for the owner rather than work with them, as part of the organization,” Tribble says. “I have more of an oversight role at Caesars.” Creating resort destinations with retail components is a challenge that feeds Tribble’s enthusiasm. “It’s very exciting, a complete package of product types” to consider when working on gaming projects, he notes. While his extensive design and construction experience includes more than a decade in the gaming industry, the sheer scope of Caesars presents many interesting challenges.

Interesting challenges abound, because this is a true moment of reinvention for Caesars. After spending the last three years in bankruptcy reorganization, the company has had its hands tied when it comes to building out and completing renovation projects. With that reorganization complete and the recent appointment of Tribble to the position of SVP, the company now has the time, energy, and capital to expand its reach. “There are all kinds of new opportunities that we have to take in, new ground-up properties in Las Vegas and worldwide,” Tribble says, also noting that the company is considering new markets in Asia and elsewhere in North America.

One of the current projects Tribble is most excited about is the design of a new convention center in Las Vegas, which Caesars hopes to make available as a ballroom-style convention and conference space for industry-leading technology companies like Google and Apple. Tribble’s plan is to make the convention center an annual location for exhibits and events from these tech companies, offering an end-user experience that will attract major names in tech.

The convention center is the first major project Caesars will undertake after finishing its reorganization, and it will take at least two years to complete. “It’s a substantial project in terms of size, both the building and the interior space as we’re developing it,” says Tribble of the endeavor. With this new space, Caesars’ goal is “to take our company and offer something that hasn’t been seen yet in this industry,” according to Tribble.

At press time, Tribble has been with Caesars for only seven months, but he says that he’s settling in nicely. “We have a great team, a great group of people within the design and construction departments, and great leadership,” he explains. Many people he’s worked with admire Tribble’s leadership, including David Howryla of Marnell Companies. “Howard brings not only a wealth of experience, but an overarching customer focus coupled with a leadership style that will empower his team and partners to deliver innovative guest experiences across Caesars’ portfolio,” Howryla says.

Brad Friedmutter, founder and CEO of Friedmutter Group, is also a longtime admirer of Tribble’s talents and leadership abilities. “We’ve worked with Howard for many years, both when he was with Station Casinos and when he was with Warner Gaming. Now that he is with another of our longtime clients, Caesars Entertainment, we are fortunate to be continuing our successful working relationship on exciting new projects,” Friedmutter says.

While he is still comparatively new to Caesars, he has not seen much need to shake things up, preferring instead to trust his experienced team of professionals. “I inherited a wonderful team,” says Tribble of his department. “I deem them all to be experts in their field with a wide range of talents, and I love that.” His goal, then, is to “provide leadership that allows them to shine,” honing their skill sets while providing mentorship that allows them to continue their professional growth. “I did not come into this setting looking to make wholesale changes,” Tribble notes. There have been no firings and no layoffs—in fact, he’s been hiring new talent to bolster Caesars’s design team for the project.

The corporate culture at Caesars has been one of the highlights of his new position. “Caesars has been in business for over 50 years,” Tribble says,  explaining that this longevity results in a professional, expertly run culture. “The future—and present—are extremely exciting, with many opportunities to expand the brand and our company.” Having successfully navigated the complexities of bankruptcy, Caesars is now focused on growth, bringing experts to further its plans for expansion—plans that Tribble is excited to be a part of.

“We have tremendous brands and a tremendous history; we strive to treat the guest like a Caesar. It’s all about the guest experience and taking care of the customers,” Tribble says. “We’re simply looking to broaden that exposure across the globe.”

The PENTA Building Group congratulates Howard Tribble as senior vice president of design and construction for Caesars Entertainment on his recognition by American Builders Quarterly.

Since PENTA’s inception more than 17 years ago, you have always led with integrity and partnered with PENTA from a position of respect, continuing to be an integral part of PENTA’s growth and success.

Your commitment to find unique construction solutions benefiting the entire development team is a rare talent in today’s development industry. PENTA has always respected your ability to develop value-added solutions in challenging projects.

We are proud to call you our partner, and look forward to many more years of amazing accomplishments. Congratulations!