Prince George’s County native to lead policy and government relations strategy for Maryland’s new destination resort casino
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. (JANUARY 11, 2017) – MGM National Harbor, the new luxury destination resort casino, has named Kerry Russell Watson, Jr. as Vice President of Government Affairs. Mr. Watson joined the company on January 2 to oversee government relations with state and local elected officials in Maryland, and to manage the legislative agenda in the state for parent company MGM Resorts International [NYSE: MGM].
With this appointment, MGM National Harbor further strengthens its senior management team, and deepens its commitment to hiring talented leaders with roots in Prince George’s County. Mr. Watson has spent 10 years in government affairs positions, and has cultivated diverse experience across the public and private sector. Throughout his career, he has been well regarded as a senior advisor and effective strategist, policymaker and relationship builder with elected officials, constituents and organizations.
“We are pleased to have such a seasoned government affairs expert join the MGM team. Kerry has dedicated many years to being a successful collaborator within and on behalf of the County, and we are confident that his talents will serve our organization well,” said Michael Pappas, Vice President and General Counsel, MGM National Harbor.
Mr. Watson recently served as a Government Relations Consultant at Alexander & Cleaver. Previously, he had a distinguished career of more than 20 years working in government and law enforcement in Prince George’s County, Md. including as a Senior Advisor in the County Executive’s Office, Executive Board Officer and 2nd Vice President for the Fraternal Order of Police and serving as an officer and training instructor in the Police Department.
Mr. Watson has maintained lifelong ties to the community, and proudly has been a part of its evolution by championing economic development and community engagement. Since 2015, he has served on the Advisory Board of Path to Greatness, Inc., a local charitable organization that supports nonprofits by inspiring citizens to engage in volunteerism and philanthropy. He graduated from University of Maryland University College. Mr. Watson is passionate about enjoying time with his family and capturing the beauty of the Capital Region through photography.