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Gaming Guru

Cy Ryan
 

Ex-Nevada Gaming Control Board Member Dies

11 August 2005

CARSON CITY, Nevada – (PRESS RELEASE) -- Jack Stratton, who served as a member of the state Gaming Control Board longer than any other person, died Tuesday at a rest home in Carson City.

He was 83 and had been ill for some time.

"He (Stratton) was demanding but fair. He left his mark on the industry," said Bob List, who was one of three Nevada governors who appointed or reappointed Stratton to the board.

Jeff Silver, a Las Vegas lawyer and former member of the Control Board, called Stratton "a giant in the gaming regulatory field." He said Stratton brought a "common sense approach" to the board but "was tough when he had to be."

"He set the standard for the model of a gaming regulator," said Silver who served in the board from 1975 to 1979.

Stratton served from Jan. 1, 1969, until January 1983. He was appointed by Gov. Paul Laxalt and then reappointed by Mike O'Callaghan and Bob List.

List noted that Stratton served during some "tough times" when there was a "major cleanup" of the gaming industry following the revelations of the so-called "Kansas City tapes," federal wiretap recordings that pointed to mob interests in some Las Vegas casinos.

Stratton was on the board when the state closed the Aladdin and forced other casinos to change ownership.

Philip Hannifin, chairman of the Control Board for eight years, called Stratton the "epitome of the old time Nevadans.'

"He was as honest as you could be," said Hannifin, adding that Stratton always wanted to do "what was best for Nevada."

"This is a loss to everyone."

Stratton was hired as office manager for the board in 1955 and held that position until his elevation to a board member.