Richard Haskins, the president of Nevada‘s Red Rock Resorts and Station Casinos, died Saturday, July 4, in what is being described as a “watercraft” accident, according to a statement from the company. CEO Frank Fertitta III also released a statement, praising Haskins.
The Board of Directors is expected to announce the succession plan in the next few days.
According to the Reno Journal Gazette, Station Casinos owns 20 gaming properties all over Southern Nevada.
The Company Says, ‘The Entire Station Casinos Family’ Is In Mourning
At 56, Haskins had spent nearly more than half of his life with the company. The company has expressed sympathy for Haskins’ family:
It is with profound sadness that we announce that Richard J. Haskins, President of Red Rock Resorts, Inc. and Station Casinos LLC, died today in a watercraft accident while vacationing in Michigan. The entire Station Casinos family mourns this loss. On behalf of our Board of Directors, management team and employees, we extend our deepest sympathies to the Haskins family.”
“The Board of Directors expects to make further announcements regarding its plan of succession in the coming days.
Fertita III described Haskins as integral to Station Casino’s success:
Words cannot express what Rich has meant to the Company and to me in the 25 years he has been with Station Casinos. He was a trusted advisor, a brilliant strategist, a steady hand in good times and in bad and most important – a friend to all. It is very hard to imagine Station Casinos being the Company it is today without Rich. He will be sorely missed by all who knew him. Our thoughts and prayers are with his children, his family and his loved ones.
Haskins joined Station Casinos in 1995, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, where he was the general counsel of midwest operations. In 2015, he also became president of Red Rock Resorts and Station Casinos.
Haskins was executive vice president and general counsel of Station Casinos LLC from January 2011 to October 2015 and he was also general counsel of Fertitta Entertainment from April 2011 to May 2016, according to CDC Gaming Reports.
Red Rock Resorts and Station Casinos Have Been Hit Hard by Coronavirus
According to the University Libraries’ Center for Gaming Research, at one point, Station Casinos owned ten casinos in Las Vegas, Nevada; six properties in Henderson, Nevada; one managed property in California and one managed property in Michigan.
Many of the properties which Haskins was charged with overseeing have struggled due to closures to prevent the coronavirus pandemic from spreading.
Red Rock Resorts, according to Casino Beats, “saw first-quarter revenue drop 15.6% from $477m to $377.4m due to the aforementioned shutdowns.”
In response, Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta (Station Casinos Vice-Chairman) announced that they would forgo their salaries until the pandemic is over, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.
The company implemented a “Play It Safe” campaign with such safety measures as thermal temperature scans, physical distancing and the establishment of more than 170 hand sanitizer stations. Also casino employees are required to wear masks and lowering the number of chairs at slot machines and craps tables, KTNV-TV news reported.
However, not all of the properties have been reopened. In May, Station Casinos said it would reopen Red Rock, Green Valley Ranch, Santa Fe, Boulder Station, Palace Station, Sunset Station and Wildfire properties and next, reopen the Palms, Fiesta Henderson, Fiesta Rancho and Texas Station properties, FOX-5 reported. In early July, Station Casinos made a request to keep its Fiesta Rancho and Texas Station properties closed which was approved by the North Las Vegas City Council.