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Hoenig steps down as NIGC general counsel


The National Indian Gaming Commission (NIGC) has announced the departure of Michael Hoenig as its general counsel.

Hoenig’s departure will take effect on 27 January.

Hoenig joined NIGC in 2006 and served in a number of roles, including as general counsel for the past seven years, working with tribes across the US and supporting them through the pandemic.

Prior to this, he was associate general counsel and also had a spell as senior attorney.

Hoenig, the longest-serving general counsel in the history of the NIGC, will now become vice president and associate general counsel for gaming at the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians.

Rea Cisneros will serve as acting general counsel, with Esther Dittler to become an acting associate general counsel, joining Sharon Avery.

“I am sincerely grateful to have been privileged enough to get to serve with the amazing staff to advance the mission and purposes of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act – to protect Tribal gaming as one of the most important economic resources in Indian country,” Hoenig said.

“I look forward to continuing that mission from a slightly different perspective in this new role with the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians.”

NIGC chairman Sequoyah Simermeyer added: “Mike’s solution-driven approach helped to institutionalize a number of new practices in the general counsel’s office. These improvements maximized the skills of legal staff and attorneys and have been important in attracting and building one of the best legal teams the Agency has ever had.

“I am both excited for Mike as he pursues a new and well-deserved opportunity in Indian country. I will miss him as a leader, important contributor to advancing the NIGC mission, and a respected voice in much of Agency’s innovations in recent years.”