Las Vegas stadium, other project subcontractors seek veterans

Updated November 10, 2018 - 5:27 pm

Dozens of construction workers clad in fluorescent vests working on the Las Vegas stadium project once wore military uniforms.

There’s no requirement for companies to hire veterans who have re-entered the workforce upon leaving the military, but companies working on some of the biggest projects in Southern Nevada are seeking out military veterans because of their leadership skills and investment in teamwork.

LIVECAM: Monitor the progress of Las Vegas Stadium in this view looking south toward the construction site.

Mortenson Construction Co. — the contractor building the $1.8 billion stadium at Interstate 15 and Russell Road — said about 3 percent of the hours worked by subcontractor employees were put in by veterans as of the end of September.

“Obviously, in terms of chain of command and working as part of a team, I think folks sometimes don’t really realize that you don’t work in isolation on the project site,” said Lynn Littlejohn, director of community affairs for Minneapolis-based Mortenson Construction.

“You’re really part of a team and that whole teamwork is what it takes to get the job done. Obviously, veterans are very well versed in that.”

One of the contracting companies that have worked on the stadium site is Las Vegas-based A-1 Concrete Cutting & Demolition, whose owner, Joe Monteiro, believes military structure helps drive veterans to success in civilian life.

A-1’s cutting and drilling operation has been used on public and private construction projects across the valley for 31 years. Today, nearly 30 percent of Monteiro’s team has military experience, and it’s one of the things he looks for when hiring contract workers.

“It starts at basic training. They take control of the man’s life. They say, ‘Listen, you may have been a punk on the street, but you’re not going to be a punk here,’ and they toughen them up.”

Monteiro said the military teaches respect, teamwork and the chain of command.

“In construction work, you need team players,” he said. “You don’t need a guy that thinks he knows it all and can do it all, because you can’t. If you don’t have your co-workers working alongside of you, they’ll bury you, and how they bury you is by not performing or making you look bad.”

Monteiro said one of the most successful sales representatives at the company is Corey Anderson, who joined the company from the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves.

Anderson started with the company as a runner, driving equipment and supplies to job sites. He asked Monteiro for a new challenge in sales, even though it paid less — but he could earn a commission if successful.

Monteiro was confident in Anderson after seeing his drive, a passion he believes was fostered by his military training.

“Now, he’s my top salesman,” Monteiro said. “Corey’s goal now is to have a better year this year than last year.”

Another construction company, PENTA Building Group, is a general contractor on the $375 million Caesars Forum convention center.

More than 15 percent of the Las Vegas-based company’s employees are veterans, and the company is hiring more.

“We understand there’s great talent in the military,” said PENTA marketing manager Tim Putnam. It’s great “being able to say we’ll help them transition to civilian life, and hopefully we gain a great employee in the process.”

Two of PENTA’s veteran employees were hired through the local chapter of the national veteran employment program Hiring Our Heroes, including Jose Mendez. After working as an intern for the company for 11 weeks, Mendez was set to begin work as a project engineer Tuesday.

Mendez, 39, has been in the Air Force for 20 years. He joined immediately after high school and will officially retire Dec. 1. To help him prepare for civilian life, Hiring Our Heroes offered Mendez a 12-week fellowship program and connected him with PENTA. Hiring Our Heroes has helped about 50 veterans find work in Las Vegas since it came to the valley a little over a year ago.

“When (life in the military) becomes all you’ve known from the time you were 18 or just graduating high school, it’s definitely daunting to go into these new environments and try to adapt,” said Sierra Schafer, program manager for the Hiring Our Heroes corporate fellowship program in the Las Vegas area. “It’s all they’ve known.”

Mendez said he enjoys the people and the culture at the company.

“Everybody does their share and works hard to achieve their common goal,” Mendez said. “I wasn’t sure I’d find that in the civilian sector.”

Putnam said this is the company’s first year working with Hiring Our Heroes, and the staff has been impressed with results.

“(Mendez) proved himself out there,” Putnam said. “He has a great work ethic. … He’s polite and diligent. He’s a great find for us.”

Mendez said his role as an HVAC technician in the Air Force helped prepare him for his new role, but he has faced a learning curve.

“A lot of the words (used on the job), we have different terms for it (in the Air Force),” he said. “I had some background knowledge, but I had to ask a lot of questions.”

Mendez said his new job will make all the difference for him and his family, which includes his wife, two dogs and four kids.

“I’ll be able to take care of my family,” he said.

Contact Richard N. Velotta at or 702-477-3893. Follow @RickVelotta on Twitter. Contact Bailey Schulz at or 702-383-0233. Follow @bailey_schulz on Twitter.

A previous version of this story incorrectly reported PENTA Building Group’s role in the Caesars Forum project. PENTA is a general contractor.

Mecum Car Auction in Las Vegas
The Mecum Auctions is held at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/ Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Construction underway for new Google Data Center
Henderson is slated to be home to a new Google data center in December 2020. The Governor’s Office of Economic Development approved $25.2 million in tax abatements for Design LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Google. The company plans to build the data center on 64 acres of land on Warm Springs Road west of Boulder Highway.
Anthony Rufo talks about his new product, an in-home digital companion and monitor.
Anthony Rufo talks about his new product, HAPPIE Home technology, an in-home digital companion and monitor designed for unpaid family caregivers that gives personalized alerts, messages and reminders. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Holiday parades help bring shoppers to Downtown Summerlin
Sports Town USA floor manager Angela Gardonio talks about the work that goes into the Downtown Summerlin holiday parades and how they benefit her and other businesses there.
Final vote on CG Technology
Final commission vote on the $2 million settlement for CG Technology.
Happie Home Startup Establishing Headquarters In Las Vegas
Digital companion startup company Happie Home is establishing its headquarters in Las Vegas after receiving tax abatements from the Governor's Office of Economic Development on Nov. 15. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
A Facebook-branded space inside of Macy’s at the Fashion Show shopping center
A Facebook-branded space inside of Macy’s at the Fashion Show shopping center will showcase 13 small businesses in November and December and seven in January. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
T-Mobile uses ticketing data to plan for event
T-Mobile Executive Director of Arena Operations explains how ticket sales data and demographics help plan staffing, vendors, parking and operations for an event.
Costco opens its doors in southwest Henderson
Costco has opened its fifth Las Vegas-area location near the intersection of St. Rose Parkway and Amigo Street. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas strip mall and office park
The Krausz Cos. and WG Group bought a strip mall and an office park in Las Vegas for nearly $80 million total. They acquired a portion of Tropicana Beltway Center in the southwest valley for $59 million. They also acquired the Westbay office complex in the Las Vegas Medical District. The buyers are former owners of The Gramercy, a once-mothballed mixed-use project in the Las Vegas suburbs. They sold The Gramercy in phases for more than $100 million.
Mario Barth talks about the growth of the tattoo industry
Celebrity tattoo artist and business owner Mario Barth talks about the growth of the tattoo industry at The World of Tattoo industry trade show at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas
$7.5M Las Vegas pot dispensary opens near Las Vegas Strip
Planet 13, which bills itself as one of the largest dispensaries in the world, opened to the public Thursday. It has entertainment including an interactive floor and floating orbs. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Caesars CEO to step down next year
Caesars Entertainment Corp. CEO Mark Frissora will leave the casino company in February. Frissora has been CEO since July 2015. He was named CEO right after Caesars' operating company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Caesars Entertainment emerged from bankruptcy protection in October 2017 Before Caesars, Frissora spent seven years as chairman and CEO of Naples, Fla.,-based Hertz He led the consolidation of the rental-car industry through Hertz‘s acquisition of the Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group.
Planet 13 in Las Vegas adds twist to marijuana dispensary look
Planet 13, which bills itself as one of the largest dispensaries in the world, opened to the public Thursday. The dispensary is located near the intersection of Desert Inn Road and Sammy Davis Jr. Drive, near Trump International, in Las Vegas. Planet 13 has plans in the future for a coffee shop, a tasting room for marijuana-infused beer and wine, a lounge for consuming marijuana on site if that is legalized and space for food.
Caesars Entertainment opening 2 resorts in Dubai
Cove Beach will open on Meraas’ Bluewaters Island in Dubai in November and Caesars Palace Bluewaters Dubai and The Residences at Caesars Palace Bluewaters Dubai will open in December. (Caesars Entertainment)
Bellagio, MGM Resorts International’s luxury hotel turns 20
The more than 3,000-room Bellagio hotel is situated on the site of the former Dunes Hotel. The Dunes was imploded in 1993, and construction of the Bellagio started in 1996. It cost $1.6 billion to build, making it the most expensive hotel in the world at the time. The Bellagio was former Wynn Resorts Ltd. Chairman and CEO Steve Wynn’s second major casino on the Strip after The Mirage. MGM Resorts International acquired the property from Steve Wynn in 2000. (Tara Mack/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Facial recognition software at G2E – Todd Prince
Shing Tao, CEO of Las Vegas-based Remark Holdings, talks about his facial recognition product. (Todd Prince/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Former NBA player, Shaquille O'Neal, speaks about his new Las Vegas chicken restaurant
Former NBA player, Shaquille O'Neal, speaks about his new Las Vegas chicken restaurant. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Bobby Baldwin to leave MGM
MGM Resorts International executive and professional poker player Bobby Baldwin is set to leave MGM.
Caesars has new armed emergency response teams
Caesars Entertainment Corp. has created armed emergency response teams. They are composed of former military and law enforcement officials. "These teams provide valuable additional security capabilities,” Caesars spokeswoman Jennifer Forkish said. Caesars is hiring Security Saturation Team supervisors, managers and officers, according to LinkedIn. The company did not say how many people it plans to hire for the units. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas, airlines prepare for CES
CES in January is expected to attract more than 180,000 attendees. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
AGS partners with Vegas Golden Knights
AGS is the nation’s second-largest manufacturer of Class II slot machines used primarily in tribal jurisdictions. It announced a marketing partnership with the Vegas Golden Knights NHL team. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Lehman Brothers bet big on Las Vegas
Lehman Brothers collapsed 10 years ago, helping send the country into the Great Recession.
Fremont9 opens downtown
Fremont9 apartment complex has opened in downtown Las Vegas. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @marcusvillagran
Ross & Snow launches in Las Vegas
Luxury shoe brand Ross & Snow has opened in Las Vegas, featuring "functional luxury" with premium shearling footwear. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Remote Identification and Drones
DJI vice president of policy and public affairs discusses using remote identification on drones. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Drones and public safety in Nevada
Two representatives in the drone industry discuss UAV's impact on public safety. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Frontier Airlines to launch flights from Las Vegas to Mexico
Frontier, a Denver-based ultra-low-cost carrier, will become the first airline in more than a decade to offer international service to Canada and Mexico from Las Vegas when flights to Cancun and Los Cabos begin Dec. 15. (Rick Velotta/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
MGM Resorts International CEO Jim Murren addresses Oct. 1 lawsuits
MGM Resorts International Chairman and CEO Jim Murren addresses criticism his company has received for filing a lawsuit against the survivors of the Oct. 1 shooting. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
MGM Resorts International opens the doors on MGM Springfield
Massachusetts’ first hotel-casino opens in downtown Springfield. The $960 million MGM Springfield has 252 rooms and 125,000-square-feet of casino. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like