Lynn Malerba was appointed chairwoman of the Mohegan Tribal Council on Monday, the first female to hold the top elected leadership position for the owners of Mohegan Sun casino.

Lynn Malerba was appointed chairwoman of the Mohegan Tribal Council on Monday, the first female to hold the top elected leadership position for the owners of Mohegan Sun casino.

“That’s pretty exciting,” she said of her historic feat. “I owe just a huge debt of gratitude to the women leaders who I knew growing up and who preceded me.”

Malerba, 56, succeeds Bruce “Two Dogs” Bozsum, who was appointed by his peers to Malerba’s former post as vice chairman of the nine-member council.

She was the top vote-getter in a tribal election in August, a status that typically results in the chairmanship as decided by the council.

Five members who were elected to the open four-year council positions were sworn in during a private ceremony at the Mohegan Congregational Church in Uncasville.

Among the female Mohegan leaders that Malerba said inspired her to serve her tribal community were her great-aunt Loretta Schultz, a tribal councilor, and her mother, Loretta Roberge, a councilor for 30 years who helped the tribe petition for federal recognition.

Vote of confidence

Malerba said she viewed the election as a vote of confidence for the council, because four members were re-elected, including Malerba, Bozsum, William Quidgeon Jr. and Ralph James Gessner Jr. Kathy Regan-Pyne was elected to the council for the first time.

The incumbents were part of a council that has fought state Attorney General Richard Blumenthal’s call for a total casino smoking ban. The council also had to confront its most challenging economic downturn since Mohegan Sun opened in 1996, a climate that forced the suspension of a major expansion last year. 

“The thing about this election is it was very clear that the tribe thinks this council was a good team,” said Malerba, whose great-grandfather was Mohegan Chief Matahga.

She said the council works to benefit tribal members while considering its impact on the region and the state. Malerba said the casino does business with 2,000 businesses statewide.

“The economy plays a big role in whatever we do here,” Malerba said. “We will get through this recession and we’ll be stronger for it.”

Montville Mayor Joe Jaskiewicz said he worked with Malerba when she was vice chairwoman a few times on government-to-government issues.

“I’ve known Lynn. She lives in town,” he said. “I’m looking forward to working with Lynn and continuing (the tribe and town’s) great relationship.”

Norwich Bulletin
 

Profile Name: Lynn Malerba

Age: 56

Residence: Uncasville

Family: She and her husband, Paul, have two daughters, Elizabeth, 25, and Angela, 23.

Education: Hartford Hospital School of Nursing, 1974; bachelor’s degree in nursing from St. Joseph College in Hartford, 1983; master’s degree in public administration from the University of Connecticut, 2008.

Occupation: Mohegan Tribal Council chairwoman; elected tribal councilor in 2005 and served as vice chairwoman.

Career: Director, and then executive director, of the tribe’s Health and Human Services Department, 1997-2005; prior to her employment with the tribe, she held director and manager positions with Lawrence & Memorial Hospital in New London and serves on its board of directors.