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July 22, 2014

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Erin Dostal

Story Archive

Success by the spoonful
Monday, Oct. 24, 2011
Julie Hession did something pretty amazing — she started a business in Las Vegas in 2008 and now markets in 25 states. What’s even more amazing? This former corporate businesswoman and MBA is her own, and only, employee.
Meet Dave Viger: Hands-on leader
Monday, Oct. 17, 2011
From experiencing a brief stint with the New York Jets and attending the U.S. Naval Academy to becoming regional president of Harmony Homes, Dave Viger is a high-achieving guy.
Ralph Scamardella: Club cuisine
Monday, Oct. 10, 2011
Ralph Scamardella is head chef for two of the most profitable restaurants in the country: Tao at the Venetian and Lavo at the Palazzo, with other locations in New York City. Scamardella talks with VEGAS INC about the challenges of catering to a foodie — and clubbing — crowd.
Meet Aron Ezra: Top Techie
Monday, Oct. 3, 2011
Aron Ezra, vice president of mobile technologies at Bally Technologies, is new to Las Vegas, but this high-tech guy is already making a big impact.
Meet Cabot Woolley: Marketing master
Monday, Sept. 26, 2011
Cabot Woolley, senior vice president at Trialogue Direct, a full-service marketing company in Las Vegas, spoke with VEGAS INC about his philosophies and the most common marketing mistakes business people can make.
Chocolate heaven thanks to Ethel M
Monday, Sept. 19, 2011
Jen Gudgel, Director of Gourmet Chocolates at Ethel M, started working at the Henderson-based company seven years ago, and since then, it has been one chocolate-covered success.
Meet Adam Sperling: Golf charity czar
Monday, Sept. 5, 2011
From his first job as a Little League umpire to becoming tournament director for the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, Adam Sperling has a long history working in sports—just don’t ask him about his golf game.
Honorable mentions for 'smartest' in town include Robert Bigelow, Lorenzo Fertitta
Monday, Sept. 5, 2011
In our long discussions about who to select as The Smartest Dude In Town, several tempting names came up.
Meet Brian Burton: Hungry for Charity
Monday, Aug. 22, 2011
Three Square food bank CEO Brian Burton has only been in Las Vegas for a couple of months, but the nonprofit star with more than two decades of experience is already making quite an impact.
Border Grill’s 'Too Hot Tamales' talk business
Monday, Aug. 15, 2011
Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken started their Border Grill brand in Los Angeles nearly three decades ago. They became “Too Hot Tamales” in 1995 and both recently starred on Top Chef Masters—and they’re, without a doubt, two of the most popular and memorable chefs on the Las Vegas Strip.
Lauren Schugar: Fashion expert for Las Vegas business execs
Any busy executive needs to meet Lauren Schugar: Smart, honest and a formidable stylist. Sartorial advice never looked so good.
Monday, Aug. 15, 2011
Chic, sophisticated and, yes, oh-so-sweet, stylist Lauren Schugar wants you to look good. Really good. So good that at the next board meeting, those new, high-end clients won’t be able to resist you—or closing that multimillion-dollar deal. Schugar owns her own company, Modern Image, which reworks your wardrobe into something as stylish as her own.
Meet Jeremy Aguero: A stats guy opens up
Monday, Aug. 8, 2011
Jeremy Aguero, principal at Applied Analysis, is one of the local go-to guys for data and statistics on real estate and the economy. This fourth-generation Las Vegan shares a bit of his personal life, and why he’s stayed put, with VEGAS INC.
Linda Rodriguez: Red Rocked
Monday, Aug. 1, 2011
Linda Rodriguez, executive chef for the past five years at Hachi at Red Rock Resort has cooked all over the world, giving her creative cuisine an international flair. A native of the Philippines, Rodriguez shares with VEGAS INC her artistry with Japanese cuisine.
25-year-old opens cupcake bakery amid recession
Monday, Aug. 1, 2011
It all began when Santa Claus brought Katie Thompson a pink KitchenAid mixer when she was a little girl. Best. Present. Ever. It struck a passion for baking in her. And the rest... Well, you know.
Gareth Long collects businesses — and fast toys
Las Vegas business owner Gareth Long has the life you want.
Monday, Aug. 1, 2011
Gareth Long is a business owner, but in a lot of ways, he’s sort of like a superhero. The guy has created 320 jobs in Las Vegas since 2007—no small feat during the Great Recession. That aside, how he got to Las Vegas is even more, well, super.
Meet Paul Bell, real estate expert
Monday, July 25, 2011
Paul Bell, president of the Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors, knows the impact of the Great Recession on real estate better than just about anyone, but he remains an optimistic guy. Texas-born, Bell shares with VEGAS INC his favorite book and the best advice on how to make a happy marriage last.
Nicole Johnson: Contractor, mother, monster truck driver
Nicole Johnson is co-owner of Koplin Construction, a wife and mother of two boys. And, oh yeah, she drives monster trucks and 4x4 vehicles professionally, on the side. Cool, right?
Monday, July 18, 2011
When Nicole Johnson,a co-owner of Koplin Construction and mother of two boys, tells you she’ll be a television host for a badass show about off-road vehicles someday—and hopefully soon—it’s easy to believe she’d be perfect for such a gig. In fact, you visualize that goal and it works—you want to watch. Her résumé is ridiculous (as in good), a nd has a personality to make her memorable (also good).
Shelley Berkley talks election, economy, education
Thursday, July 14, 2011
After 13 years representing Nevada’s 1st Congressional District, Shelley Berkley wants a promotion — to the U.S. Senate. She announced her candidacy in April. And if she wins the Democratic nomination, she’ll likely face newly appointed Sen. Dean Heller.
Berkley talks online gaming, economy and Nevada's future
Congresswoman Shelley Berkley takes on running for the U.S. Senate, health care reform, fixing Las Vegas’ economy and, yes, Anthony Weiner.
Monday, July 11, 2011
Congresswoman Shelley Berkley’s publicists are armed and ready—with a large can of hair spray. Smoothing down the fly-aways atop her head and donning her signature reddish-pink lipstick, the Las Vegan knows she looks put together. She’s confident, practically born ready for her VEGAS INC photo shoot. Besides, one-on-one photo shoots and interviews are the fun part of her gig in public service. Bring it on.
Meet Bob Maricich, CEO of International Market Centers
Monday, July 11, 2011
Bob Maricich, newly appointed CEO of International Market Centers, is a long way from his first job as an ice cream man in Montana. Today, he’s one of the top executives in the home furnishings business. Maricich tells VEGAS INC about his recent promotion, his personal life and the impact of the Great Recession on his company’s business.
Shawn McClain: Sage indeed
Monday, July 11, 2011
Chef Shawn McClain has expanded his repertoire since becoming executive chef of Sage at Aria. A businessman as well as a chef, McClain tells VEGAS INC why drink pairings and simple cooking set him apart.
Devin Hashimoto: New digs
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Devin Hashimoto had a whirlwind tour of the food business at the Wynn—including banquets­—after the restaurant where he worked, Alex, closed last year.
Leslie Parraguirre: Designing her future
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Leslie Parraguirre, principal of Colours Inc., an interior design firm at the Holsum Lofts, knows what builds a successful business even during a catastrophic recession. Although her company has been hit hard by the economic downturn, this lifelong Las Vegan doesn’t let that get her—or her employees—down.
Etiquette goes corporate
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Sitting with perfect posture and neatly coiffed, Keynote Academy founder Paula Lawrence is ready to talk manners—proper ones, of course.
UNLV law dean: Goal is to be a significant regional player
Getting past the fact that UNLV houses the only law school in Nevada, its dean, John Valery White, is one cool character (with an astonishing résumé). Just how did he land at our doorstep?
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Fifteen years ago, Las Vegas didn’t have a law school. Nevada didn’t have a law school. All legal talent was imported from other states. In 1998, UNLV opened its William S. Boyd School of Law. In a self-proclaimed libertarian city where just two in every ten people have earned a college degree, UNLV Law School Dean John Valery White is an obvious stand-out—and he hopes to make many of his students stand-out citizens, too.
Meet Anthony A. Marnell III, M Resort's head honcho
Monday, June 27, 2011
Anthony A. Marnell III, president of M Resort, has had his share of business challenges since his resort opened in 2009, but that hasn’t gotten him down. Marnell has qualities that set him apart from the rest: A constant striving for perfection and an everyman’s mentality toward hard work.
Carlos Guía: Carnivore
Monday, June 27, 2011
Carlos Guía’s The Country Club at the Wynn is a must-be-seen spot for power lunches, as it’s easy to discern upon entering the attractive restaurant. We asked the eatery’s chef what keeps patrons coming back.
Scott Kay: King of bling
Dewelry designer Scott Kay shines at couture
Monday, June 20, 2011
Top jewelry designer and businessman Scott Kay is a true original, much like the exquisite pieces he conceptualizes and creates. Known once mainly for his bridal designs for women, Kay branched out to men’s jewelry in a bold and daring way.
Bill Urga: One proud lawyer
Monday, June 20, 2011
In a city where almost all legal talent is imported, Bill Urga of Jolley Urga Wirth Woodbury & Standish is the exception. Born and raised in Las Vegas, Urga returned to his hometown after law school because he knew it was where he and his family would ultimately belong. Urga talks with VEGAS INC about what makes his firm, and him, different from the rest.
Sergio Pérez, Cuban
Monday, June 13, 2011
Celebrated restaurateaur Sergio Pérez proudly says his restaurants are simply culinary love letters to his native Cuba.
Laurent Tourondel: Voilà!
Monday, June 13, 2011
Laurent Tourondel is known for his BLT—Bistro Laurent Tourondel—brand in New York City and at BLT Burger at the Mirage.
Meet Carole Fisher: When helping others comes naturally
Monday, June 13, 2011
Carole Fisher, CEO of Nathan Adelson Hospice, has always known she wanted to make a career of helping people every day. Having achieved that goal, and in a leadership role, Fisher is a true Las Vegas success story.
Dina Mitchell: From Moscow to Smoothies
Monday, June 6, 2011
Dina Mitchell, area developer for Topical Smoothie Cafe, celebrated a decade in her job last month.
Mike Snedegar Takes A Shot
Monday, June 6, 2011
Mike Snedegar is best known around town for throwing huge, celebrity-laden parties at TAO, TAO Beach and LAVO, where he’s in charge of entertainment marketing.
Wolfgang Puck: Chattin’ up the original celebrity chef
Monday, May 30, 2011
Wolfgang Puck is the original celebrity chef. The restaurateur and businessman is recognized worldwide as someone who not only knows how to cook, but how to sell his own, unique brand.
Meet Russell Joyner: NFL star goes shopping
Monday, May 30, 2011
Former NFL player and current Executive Vice President and General Manager of Miracle Mile Shops Russell Joyner knows how to run a business. From the 50-yard line on the football field to what he calls the 50-yard line on the middle of the Las Vegas Strip—where his Miracle Mile Shops sit—this pro shares what has made him a success on and off the field.
Behind the camera: Jimi Falin
Monday, May 23, 2011
Every eight years or so, Jimi Falin reinvents himself.
He worked in construction for eight years before taking his current job as assistant manager at celebrity-hotspot-cum-destination-restaurant Nobu at Hard Rock Hotel, where he has worked for, well, eight years.
Meet Jasen Woehrle: PR Man, Center Stage
Monday, May 23, 2011
Jasen Woehrle isn’t your average PR guy. With a background in theater, Woehrle doesn’t only know how to pitch a story, he knows how to tell it. This PR vice president at The Firm shares with VEGAS INC what keeps clients clamoring for encores.
Getting personal with Silverton President Craig Cavileer
Monday, May 16, 2011
Silverton President Craig Cavileer knows a thing or two about running a casino—especially when it comes to catering to locals. He talks with VEGAS INC about his philosophies, worst job ever and his broken heart. His answers may surprise you.
Rare-book store with Vegas location listed among tops in nation
Thursday, May 12, 2011
A rare-book store with a Las Vegas location at The Shoppes at The Palazzo has been named one of the five best in the country by Forbes magazine.
The Innovator: Kristen Makhathini
Monday, May 9, 2011
You’d think a bunch of ripped, shirtless guys would be enough to bring in the girls en masse. But, Chippendales Director of Operations Kristen Makhathini wanted something extra, something to push the Chippendales brand over the top: celebrity.
Angela Broways cleans up real nice
Monday, May 9, 2011
While working behind the counter at MC Cleaners, co-owner Angela Broways watches dozens of happy, and familiar, customers pass through her front door. Many know her by name, and some have been her customers for six years—as long as she’s been in business.
Mary Giuliano's long, steady road
Monday, May 2, 2011
Mary Giuliano’s first job in the casino business in Las Vegas was as a desk clerk at the Golden Nugget 22 years ago.
Alicia Taylor: Smart meets sexy
Monday, April 25, 2011
Real estate and sex appeal are two phrases that don’t often go hand in hand, but Alicia Taylor makes it work.
Mirage President Felix Rappaport as never before
Monday, April 18, 2011
Mirage President Felix Rappaport is a Philadelphia guy, through and through, but this Las Vegas businessman is a long way from where he started. Rappaport, a die-hard Eagles football fan and self-proclaimed rock singer, gives VEGAS INC a glimpse into his personal life.
Phil Aurbach: Attorney by day, inventor by night
Monday, April 18, 2011
Nine months ago, the idea came to him like a flash. Phil Aurbach—commercial litigator during the day, inventor in his free time—was playing tennis with his wife, Leigh, when he realized he didn’t need to be there to help her practice her serve; he could invent something to help her out instead.
Chef José Andrés: Spanish Fly
Monday, April 11, 2011
This chef wasn’t going to bring his talents to Las Vegas for just anybody­—the fit had to be perfect.
Getting personal with Colliers Co-Founder Mike Mixer
Monday, April 11, 2011
Mike Mixer, managing partner and co-founder of Colliers International’s Las Vegas office, has come a long way from working as a piano mover when he was an undergrad at UNLV. The California native talks with VEGAS INC about what makes him tick—in and out of the office.
Gladys Knight talks new show, returning to the Strip
Monday, April 11, 2011
The Empress of Soul returns to the Las Vegas Strip. And, this time, Gladys Knight plans to conquer.
Ancient science, modern business
Monday, April 4, 2011
In her store full of jade figurines, tranquil fountains and numerous stacks of how-to books, Joanie Lung is beaming. And why wouldn’t she be? The Hong Kong native practices and procures items for use in Feng Shui, the ancient Chinese science that brings “good energies” from the natural, outside world inward.

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