One of the most powerful business figures in Las Vegas’ gambling industry announced that he will be resigning his executive position amid allegations of missing academic credentials.
The Wall Street Journal broke the story that MGM Mirage Chairman and Chief Executive J. Terrence Lanni would be stepping down on November 30th. Lanni said the resignation was for personal reasons, but the Journal reported that a private investigator named Barry Minkow had uncovered a discrepancy between Mr. Lanni’s bio on the MGM website and a database of college degrees used by private eyes. Later, a University of Southern California spokesperson said the school had no record of Lanni earning an MBA at the school, or even an honorary degree, as Lanni had claimed.
Lanni has guided MGM through a period of record growth, including mergers with rival resorts and negotiating a deal with Dubai’s sovereign investment fund that led to a $5 billion cash infusion.
Whether Lanni, who will turn 66 in March, is truly leaving to spend more time with his wife in Pasadena, California, or not, in this era of electronic records and Internet access, it once again demonstrates that no one can afford the slightest misrepresentation on their CV.