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A private sector task force in Nevada, headed by former MGM Resorts executive Jim Murren, raised $4 million in two days to secure sources for protective equipment for medical workers and COVID-19 testing kits.
Murren was asked by Governor Steve Sisolak to chair Nevada’s COVID-19 Response, Relief and Recovery Task Force, and in a news conference on Monday said private donations will be managed by the Nevada Community Foundation and will be allocated to organizations helping “the most immediate needs of the community.”
The mission of the Task Force is to spur the private sector to secure equipment and funding to tackle the community’s pressing needs.
“It is absolutely critical that we use science in the state of Nevada to determine where our most pressing needs are,” Murren said.
Murren officially resigned from MGM on March 22 and is now focussing on how this money will be distributed, and how medical supplies and equipment will be utilized. He also announced seven new members of the task force, three of whom have far-reaching ties within the state’s gaming industry like Wynn Resorts Chairman Phil Satre and former Station Manaslot88 Casinos executive Scott Nielson. Also included is Nevada State Senator Yvanna Cancela.
“I applaud those who have joined the Task Force to take on one of the toughest challenges in our great state’s history,” said Sisolak in a statement. “The support of the private sector in meeting our state’s needs is vital. Together, as one Nevada, we will get through this.”
Murren added that Nevada is also competing against the federal government to secure medical supplies, test kits, and medical equipment.
“We are punching above our weight class because we have this unique network of the private sector procurement companies in the state, and very philanthropic families in the state that will allow us to get the resources we need, to get toward the front of the line instead of the back of the line,” Murren said. “In my case, I’m calling people I’ve known for 10 or 20 years,” Murren said. “And I’m saying, ‘Look, you like Las Vegas. You like coming to Nevada. We need you. We’ve helped you. You need to help us.’”
Murren himself isn’t being paid for his services, and left MGM before his contract expired at the end of 2021 after bringing forward the idea of the task force and his discussions with Sisolak.