Tim Snow, former executive of Thomas & Mack Co., dies at 79

Robert Adrian “Tim” Snow, whose expertise helped set the tone and guide commercial development in Southern Nevada in the 1990s and 2000s, has died at the age of 79.

Snow is the former president and chief development officer of Thomas & Mack Co. He died Sept. 11 after a nearly two-decade battle with prostate cancer.

Snow’s development legacy in terms of buildings will remain in the Las Vegas valley for years to come, but his family and friends and those who worked with him will remember him as a savvy and tenacious man with an infectious smile.

Snow, who had extensive experience in Southern California development, joined Thomas & Mack in 1994 as it transitioned from banking and landholding to a development company. Over his 13 years with the firm, he oversaw the construction, financing and leasing of 3.2 million square feet in 78, office, industrial, retail and hotel properties.

“How fortunate we were to have a guy who brought a lot of wealth of national expertise to Las Vegas when our marketplace for commercial development was in its infancy,” said Rod Martin, senior vice president at Majestic Realty Co., which partnered with Thomas & Mack for the Las Vegas Digital Exchange Campus — the home of Switch data center facilities. “To have leaders like Tim over the last 20 to 30 years in our commercial real estate market has helped it grow up to be on par with anything else in the country. I think by having that national experience to this marketplace, we all benefited by that.”

One of the other noteworthy projects under Snow’s direction was the McCarran Center on Warm Springs Road, home today to the headquarters of Nevada State Bank, Aristocrat, and Caesars Entertainment. Snow was known for being part of disappearing breed of developers who knew every aspects from planning and construction to finance and operations.

“He’s a giant in our industry. This guy did office, industrial and retail. He did it all,” said Rick Myers, president of Thomas & Mack. “There are probably 60 buildings in town that Tim Snow was involved in developing. He’s a major contributor, and his fingerprints are all over town.”

Myers called Snow a warrior and ferocious fighter who forged ahead while battling prostate cancer and who never complained and let it slow him down. There’s a lot to be learned and admired about how he handled it and reflective of who he was, Myers said.

“He challenged us. He would get in your face and he made us all better,” Myers said. “Even though he was a fighter and would stare you down, there was nobody any more fun in town to have a glass a red wine with than Tim Snow. He had a big infectious smile and wide range of interests from sailing to the Chicago Cubs. Some people when they pass away, you keep crying but Tim is one of those guys where when we get together everyone smiles.”

After stepping down from Thomas & Mack in 2007, Snow opened his own consultancy and became a key development adviser to UNLV, Kemper Insurance/Unitrin, city of Henderson, Delta Pacific Land Co., and the Las Vegas Art Museum. His involvement included the development of the UNLV Harry Reid Research and Technology Park.

Snow served in 1997 as president of the Southern Nevada chapter of NAIOP, the commercial real estate development organization. He received a lifetime achievement award from the organization in 2009 and left his mark on the organization.

“Whatever room he walked into, he commanded the room,” Myers said. “That guy always walks in and you thought you set up the meeting to talk about real estate, Tim walks in and guess who’s in charge. He was one of those guys.”

Snow was born March, 5, 1937, in Evanston, Illinois. He graduated from New Trier Township High School and graduated from the University of Illinois in 1959. He worked in Chicago, Dallas before going to Los Angeles and then Las Vegas.

He is survived by his wife of 36 years, Jane M. Snow, of Las Vegas, and their daughter Elizabeth V. Snow of Brooklyn, New York; two daughters from a previous marriage, Katherine E.“Kitty” Curran of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and Jennifer L. Snow of Brooklyn, New York; two son-in-laws, Joel Curran and Stephen Para; and two granddaughters, Kelsey Curran and Addison Curran. He is also survived by his sister, Jill E. Cassidy, a niece, Keely Cassidy Valdma, and great-niece, Kyrii Valdma, all of Orange County, California

His family released a statement that described him as living his life under the mantra of “all in.” They said he gave all he had and expected others to tackle not only work but play with the same vigor.

They described him as an avid sailor, golfer, skier and someone who found excitement in fierce games of backgammon and winner-take-all games of volleyball in his pool.

That tenacity and tireless effort was also true in business, Martin added, saying Snow forced everyone to up their game, otherwise he would get the deal.

“That aspect not focused on him was that was kind and caring and fun-loving guy,” Martin said. “That’s truly the Tim Snow that his wife, family and friends know. He was just as good at those aspects than the tenacity he had as a real estate developer.”

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