Monday, Nov. 12, 2012 | 8:33 a.m.
An MGM Resorts International executive today was named president and CEO of casino operator Nevada Gold & Casinos Inc.
The executive hired is Michael Shaunnessy, an MGM Resorts operations executive vice president overseeing the Railroad Pass and Gold Strike hotel-casinos in Southern Nevada.
Nevada Gold & Casinos, now based in Houston, is the company that last month announced plans to move its headquarters to Las Vegas.
The company had been investigating a potential casino development near the Las Vegas Motor Speedway but has given up on that. It’s a licensed Nevada casino operator and has been considering ways to enter the Nevada market.
Nevada Gold is best known for its 10 casinos in Washington state and a slot route in Deadwood, S.D.
Shaunnessy fills the CEO position vacated in September by Robert Sturges, who left to pursue other business interests.
Prior to joining MGM Resorts, Shaunnessy’s executive experience included positions at Monarch Casino Resorts, Full House Resorts, Primadonna Resorts and Aztar Corp., formerly Ramada Inc.
“Mike brings impressive experience and proven ability to lead Nevada Gold,” Nevada Gold Chairman William Sherlock said in a statement. “During his 30-year career in the gaming and hospitality industry, Mike has overseen the operations of both entire companies and multiple-property business units, developing and implementing strategic plans, and realigning operations to respond to changing market conditions. His track record and outstanding operational and financial skills make him the ideal person to take Nevada Gold to its next stage of development.”