Harrah’s chairman Satre to retire
RENO – Philip G. Satre, longtime chairman of Harrah’s Entertainment Inc., plans to retire effective Jan. 1.
Satre stepped down Jan. 1, 2003, as chief executive officer of Harrah’s but kept his role as chairman of the board of directors.
Replacing him was Gary Loveman, who joined Harrah’s as chief operating officer in 1998 and was named company president shortly thereafter.
It was not made public until Wednesday, but Satre and Loveman had an agreement that Loveman would take over as chairman two years after Satre’s tenure in that role.
Satre, at Harrah’s helm for 25 years, and his wife, Jennifer, intend to retire to their home in Reno, he said.
“I’m going to completely retire,” he said.
“Obviously, I’ll get to spend more time in Reno than I have over the last five years since we moved our headquarters to Las Vegas,” Satre said. “We just built a new house that we’re delighted with. Reno’s where we always wanted to be – that’s home.”
Satre, 55, said it’s hard to predict how he’ll spend his time.
“I’m still involved with Channel 5 (public television) and the Nevada Cancer Institute, and I’ll continue with those things. And Ill try to remain involved in the efforts to revitalize downtown Reno, more with private opportunities obviously, rather than with Harrah’s,” he said.
“There is what I think is some momentum there, with (the train trench project) and the downtown events center and the ballroom eventually, and river improvements that I think are beginning to take an effect.”
Satre said he’ll miss what “the excitement and the trappings of the business” – building new casinos, making deals on Wall Street, acquiring other companies – but not as much as the people.
“It’s bittersweet of course after 25 years, but I knew it was coming,” he said. “The thing you’re going to miss the most is the people – the customers, the employees, the executives.”