Thursday, Nov. 13, 2008 | 3:17 p.m.
To my friends in the MGM MIRAGE Family:
I am writing you to tell you that I have decided to retire from my position as your Chairman and CEO effective November 30.
I am recommending to the Board of Directors that Jim Murren take my place to lead this company through these turbulent times in the global economy and take it to new levels of growth and success
While we are in the midst of challenging times, we will see recovery for our community and our company. I am absolutely certain that MGM MIRAGE will emerge from this period stronger and in a better position for long-term growth than any of our competitors. One of my personal goals was to build a management team of tremendous depth and I am confident that Jim will show that effort to have been enormously successful.
I also am looking forward to continuing as a member of the Board and will seek an appointment to its Diversity Committee to continue to support those vital efforts.
It has been my privilege to serve alongside you in building MGM MIRAGE into the most respected company in our industry and one of the most respected companies in the world. For that reason, among others, I have reached this decision with decidedly mixed emotions.
Of my 30 years in the industry, I have enjoyed myself more in the past 13 years with MGM MIRAGE than at any other time. It has been a humbling honor to be a part of such a magnificent team.
We have accomplished many things together. We have built MGM Grand, Inc. from a one-property company into a global powerhouse with an unrivaled collection of the best brands and resorts in the world. We also have built a team of employees and management that is second to none. You provide memorable experiences for our guests and a level of guest service that reaches far beyond the measurements of guest satisfaction surveys.
Together we also have built a Diversity Initiative that is the standard in this, or any other, industry. You have embraced the incredible value of each and every one of us, and in so doing, have made our company and our community stronger.
Just as we have placed an emphasis on giving back to our community as one of our most important corporate values, it is now time for my wife Debbie and me to enter the next phase of our lives by focusing our life’s work on our extensive philanthropic activities. Our family established a foundation many years ago and we have been active throughout that time. I now feel a calling to re-commit myself to those efforts, especially as we see such a dramatic surge in need throughout the United States.
I know this industry well and I know that one of our industry’s favorite pastimes is gossip. Let me speak honestly to a number of silly rumors that will no doubt follow this announcement. This is not health related; I am working closely with our management team and Board to ensure a smooth and orderly transition, one that I’ve been planning for some time; I am not running for public office anywhere; I am not taking over any other company, gaming or otherwise; and, no, I’m not going to be on next season’s “Dancing with the Stars.”
As hard as it may be for some to accept, I simply believe that change is inevitable and this is the right time for me to do this. Further, I have always believed that change is good. It provides opportunities for renewal and reinvigoration.
Gandhi said: “You must be the change you want to see in the world.”
Debbie and I are excited by the opportunity to bring these words to life as we move on to the next chapter in our lives.
I hope to have the opportunity to see you in the future to personally thank you for all that you have done to make my time with MGM MIRAGE so remarkable.
J. Terrence Lanni