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1941 - 2018 Obituary Condolences Gallery
JOSEPH ESPOSITO Joseph E. Esposito, hotel casino executive and entrepreneur, passed away March 4, 2018. Joe considered 46 years of sobriety his greatest accomplishment. It was the experience of spiritual connectedness that he valued most about AA. Shortly before his last AA birthday, Joe said, "The 12 steps teach us not only to be sober but to be the best people we can be in life." As a student at Fordham University, a Jesuit school, Joe was firmly grounded in the core teachings of St. Augusta, Father Teilhard de Chardin and those of St. Thomas Aquinas who believed that, in the final analysis, we always follow our conscience. Accepting his homosexuality was an example of Joe's own commitment to the principle of following one's own conscience and he did so from an early age. One particular point of pride for Joe came in 1984, as his gay brothers and sisters were dying of AIDS, he co-chaired the Las Vegas Task Force on AIDS with then Nevada Governor, Grant Sawyer. In 2003, Joe found and eventually married the love of his life, Edgar Esposito. Joe, a native of Brooklyn, New York, enjoyed a long and successful career in the hospitality industry both as a top corporate executive and entrepreneur. Joe began with Hilton Hotels as a sales trainee. He went from Chicago to San Francisco and quickly became Vice President of Sales for Fairmont Hotels managing the sales effort for their four luxury convention properties. Joe left Fairmont to help open the MGM Reno and he would go on to serve as Executive Vice President of MGM Reno and Las Vegas concurrently. After the tragic 1980 fire at the MGM Las Vegas, Joe had the 3,000-room property at over 90 percent occupancy within three years. In 1986, Bally Manufacturing purchased MGM and Joe became President of Bally's Las Vegas. In 1988, Joe started Hotel Marketing International (HMI), a sales and marketing consulting company that generated business for the country's most successful hotels, casinos, convention bureaus and cruise lines. HMI was a full partner in EOR Weller, the original advertising agency of record for both Foxwoods Casino in Connecticut and Mystic Lake Casino in Minnesota, two of the most successful casinos in the country. Joe spent his retirement years dabbling in business as both an entrepreneur and a consultant. Joe served as a Board of Advisors member and donor to Frederick Douglass Family Initiatives (FDFI) and was deeply involved with charitable giving at several other organizations as well. Joe leaves behind Edgar; sisters, Linda and Carol; brother, Michael; and his beloved dog, Flipper. "We are one, after all, you and I. Together we suffer, together exist, and forever will recreate each other." - Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. Service will be at 10 a.m. Saturday, March 10, at Davis Funeral Home, 6200 S. Eastern Ave., Las Vegas, NV 89119. In lieu of flowers, Joe asked for a small donation to be sent to FDFI at http://fdfi.org/joe
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