Confirmed: President of Wynn and Encore Steps Down


Are changes in casino executive ranks the most interesting part of Las Vegas? No.

Is it a chance for us to break news and brag about it? Absolutely. Do you know this blog at all?

Wynn Resorts confirms Steve Weitman, President of Wynn and Encore, is stepping down on June 10, 2024. We’ve got all the tea, and possibly some herbal infusions. It’s Wynn, after all.

futuristic vegas
We asked A.I. to show us Wynn Las Vegas in the future. Nailed it.

This is the part where we share our initial scoop, mostly to embarrass the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

To their credit, the Las Vegas Review-Journal confirmed our story and included attribution to our original reporting.

You’re kidding, right? They haven’t done anything remotely like that since the Adelson family bought the paper in 2015 in one of most unethical ways possible, a tradition that continues to this day at our “paper of record.” Yes, in quotation marks.

Now that we’ve clearly established how much the Las Vegas Review-Journal sucks, let’s proceed.

Wynn Resorts staffers first got wind of Weitman’s resignation via an e-mail from Wynn Resorts CEO Craig Billings.

Here’s the content of Billings’ internal memo: “Attached you will find a letter from Steve Weitman announcing that he has elected to leave Wynn Las Vegas to explore other interests. Steve has been an integral part of Wynn Las Vegas for 20 years. He has demonstrated a singular level of dedication to Wynn and has contributed so much to our success. His career within the company has been inspiring to so many. All of us will miss Steve, but after such a long and successful run, we can all understand why he now wants some time to consider other life options. He certainly deserves that opportunity and I, and I know all of you, wish him the very best. Steve has agreed to continue through June 10th and the launch of the Revelry food festival. Thereafter, Brian Gullbrants, COO of Wynn Resorts NA, will oversee Wynn Las Vegas until we decide on a successor.”

Craig Billings is so likeable, we are not even going to make fun of the fact we had to remove all the double spaces after periods in his e-mail. Honestly, this should be the first thing asked in a CEO interview. “If we hire you as CEO, are you going to use some old-timey spacing that’s a holdover from the era of typewriters, thereby risking the ire of everyone at the Chicago Manual of Style?”

This is why we are not in charge of hiring CEOs of major casino companies, by the way.

Craig Billings gets a pass from us because he called the head of another Las Vegas casino a “fucking rank amateur” and said the executive “hasn’t operated a lemonade stand much less a complex operation” like the unnamed resort, Fontainebleau. Here’s more about the poaching saga.

Attached to Billings’ e-mail was another document in old-timey .pdf format. We turned it into a .jpg through the magic of Photoshop.

resignation email
We added the graphics from “Awakening.” Even serious memos can be improved by eye candy.

Today we learned “Awakening” has added a quote from us to its blurbs on the official “Awakening” Web site. Please note our opinion is more important than that of the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

awakening blurbs
Wynn gets it.

Here’s our review of “Awakening” at Wynn Las Vegas, the wildly expensive production you probably haven’t seen yet, despite the fact tickets are about as much as two cocktails at a Las Vegas nightclub.

We also noticed there any photos of the lead actress in “Awakening” in the site’s photo gallery? She’s awesome. Maybe time to get a better agent.

Anyhoo, here’s the scoop behind the scoop about the resignation of Steve Weitman.

steve weitman
We love Steve Weitman, and not just because he didn’t sue us for including his LinkedIn profile photo in our story. Yet.

Meh, there is none, really.

In casino industry code, “pursuing other opportunities” tends to translate as “fired.” In this case, however, Weitman is actually stepping away to pursue other opportunities. He doesn’t know what those are yet, but we trust he’ll take some time off to consider his options.

Weitman’s next gig won’t be in the casino industry, as he’s agreed to a non-compete. Yes, some people actually honor their commitments.

The inside baseball is Weitman was sort of the third guy in the Wynn Resorts pecking order, after CEO Craig Billings and COO Brian Gullbrants. Billings and Gullbrants are in it for the long haul, so the fact is there’s nowhere inside Wynn Resorts for Weitman to go.

We suspect his next job will be heading up a huge luxury hotel brand. This will give him a chance to shine, and step out from under the shadow of others in the chain of command.

We get no indication there was any drama behind-the-scenes, sadly, and the departure wasn’t caused by a scandal or butting heads with tyrannical overlords (he worked with Steve Wynn, so everything else is gravy) or any of the usual reasons people leave jobs.

future wynn
Future Wynn is going to be sweet.

The only borderline drama may have been Weitman’s colleagues asking if he’s lost his damn mind. To many, being the president of Wynn and Encore would be considered the apex of a career. He could’ve just engaged auto pilot, sold his shares and sailed off into the sunset.

We don’t get the impression Steve Weitman is an auto pilot type of resort president. He’s rumored to be an 80-hours-a-week guy, and we trust his 20 years at Wynn Resorts have been fulfilling, but sometimes, ambitious people need a new mountain to climb.

We missed the ambition gene, but we understand it in theory.

Steve Weitman wasn’t the most visible casino executive in town, but casino presidents make their presence known through spaces and people.

Wynn and Encore are next level resorts, and Weitman’s fingerprints are all over them. He is said to be beloved by his team, which is rare.

Billings asked Weitman to stick around a while to make sure it’s a smooth transition, Weitman agreed.

Talent of Weitman’s caliber is rare, so Wynn Resorts will have its work cut out for it in replacing him.

Here’s hoping the next president of Wynn and Encore has the decency to provide more fodder for our blog. At least a scandalous Halloween costume from college or grainy footage from a truckstop restroom. The bar for scandals is much higher (lower?) than in the past for casino executives, but we’ll take what we can get.

The post Confirmed: President of Wynn and Encore Steps Down appeared first on Vital Vegas.

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