Friday, July 15, 2011 | 10:36 a.m.
All of us in the MGM Resorts family are heartbroken at learning the news this morning of the passing of our friend and former Chairman Terry Lanni. However, we can take solace in knowing that we had the unique privilege of working with and learning from him.
Terry was an extraordinary leader for our company and our industry. His thoughtful leadership on important issues, from expanding the gaming industry’s reach internationally to establishing the industry’s first formal diversity and inclusion program will forever mark his place in history.
Indeed, Terry’s leadership in pioneering the first diversity and inclusion initiative in our industry was a bold and courageous move at a time when few realized the tremendous importance of all facets of diversity in the globalization of our industry and the world economy.
Terry’s leadership of our company’s diversity initiative was a true reflection of his personal values and his personality. He had a fundamental respect for the dignity and contributions of every human being. He was a man of great humility; he held no illusions of grandeur or self-importance; and he characteristically insisted that everyone, regardless of position, call him simply, “Terry.”
Likewise, Terry’s personal compassion and generosity toward others helped shape our company’s philanthropic support of our communities, often creating the path that other companies would later follow. One such example was our company’s early support of Three Square, which made a crucial difference in giving this organization a foothold in the Las Vegas community.
Education also was a special passion of Terry’s, because he believed that a quality education changes lives. His guidance established our company early-on as the leading business partner in the Clark County School District’s Empowerment School Program, and he also spearheaded MGM’s Academic Excellence Scholarship Endowment at UNLV and the MGM Hites Foundation Scholarship Awards. He led the founding of our own employee-giving arm, the MGM Resorts Foundation, which has become an enormous source of empowerment and pride for our employees’ spirit of giving.
It was this vision that ultimately positioned MGM Resorts International as the leading organization in the hospitality and entertainment industry.
I will be forever grateful for his friendship and guidance.
Even as he faced these last months of his life, he did so with typical grace, courage and strength. Like anyone who knew him, we can all learn to be better people by emulating his values personally and professionally.
A memorial will be scheduled in Pasadena and another in Las Vegas. We will keep you informed as those plans are finalized.
I also know many of you will want to share your condolences and memories of Terry with his family. Please feel free to send any thoughts or stories via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will share each of these messages with Terry’s family.
Chairman & CEO