On Tuesday, billionaire casino mogul Stephen Wynn resigned as chairman and chief executive of his company, Wynn Resorts, because of a plethora of sexual misconduct allegations going back decades.
Last month, The Wall Street Journal published an article that alleged Wynn had sexually harassed his female employees for decades. The Journal wrote that women had accused Wynn of demanding they masturbate him or massage him naked. One manicurist alleged Wynn forced her to have sex with him in 2005; the Journal stated that Wynn wound up paying her $7.5 million to settle the case.
Although Wynn has denied the allegations, he said they were instrumental in his decision to resign, stating on Tuesday:
In the last couple of weeks, I have found myself the focus of an avalanche of negative publicity. As I have reflected upon the environment this has created — one in which a rush to judgment takes precedence over everything else, including the facts — I have reached the conclusion I cannot continue to be effective in my current roles. Therefore, effective immediately, I have decided to step down as CEO and Chairman of the Board of Wynn Resorts, a company I founded and that I love.
Wynn will be replaced by Matt Maddox, president of Wynn Resorts since 2013.
After the release of the WSJ article, Wynn resigned as finance chairman of the Republican National Committee. Days later, the University of Pennsylvania revoked his honorary degree and removed his name from a campus plaza and scholarship.
As Wynn Resorts is constructing a casino near Boston, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission said it would conduct an investigation, adding it would “need to assess the overall impact and implications of this significant development.”
Wynn started his rise to power by taking over his father’s bingo parlor, then invested in the Frontier casino. He renovated and expanded the Golden Nugget in Las Vegas, later opening the Golden Nugget in Atlantic City, followed by The Mirage, Treasure Island, and Bellagio hotels/casinos.
Wynn is reportedly worth roughly $3.5 billion.