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Former NV governor Sandoval steps down from MGM role


Former Nevada governor Brian Sandoval has stepped down as MGM Resorts’ president of global gaming development in order to apply for the position of president of the University of Nevada, Reno (UNR).

Sandoval had served on the MGM board since January 2019. Prior to this, he had served the maximum two terms as Governor of Nevada, winning the gubernatorial election with 53.4% of the vote in 2010 and 70.6% in 2014.

Sandoval, a 1986 graduate of UNR, will apply for the presidency of his alma mater.

Current UNR president Marc Johnson announced in October 2019 that he will step down in June 2020 after eight years in the role.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity and privilege to have worked at MGM with Jim Murren and Bill Hornbuckle, two of the giants in the gaming industry, and the amazing MGM family,” Sandoval said.

“Having accomplished my goals at MGM, I have decided to put my time, energy and public and private experience to work as an applicant to become the next president of the University of Nevada, Reno.

“I am thankful for the experiences I had, and the people I got to know, while at MGM and wish everyone good health and safety during these challenging times.”

The former politician follows former chief executive Jim Murren in stepping down from a senior role at MGM. Murren announced his decision to step down from his role when MGM released its annual results in February, with Bill Hornbuckle taking over as acting chief executive earlier this month (23 March).

“We are grateful to Governor Sandoval for all that he has accomplished in his time at MGM Resorts,” Hornbuckle said. “He helped to advance our efforts in Japan, in jurisdictions where we were seeking expanded access, and areas where we pursued sports betting opportunities.

“We wish him the very best in pursuit of this next opportunity and thank him for his commitment to MGM Resorts.”

Last week, MGM issued an earnings update amid the Covid-19 pandemic, reporting that revenue has declined for the first two months of 2020, but net income increased more than 500-fold because of the sale of the MGM Grand and Mandalay Bay venues.