Barry A. Lazarus: Replace Rob Katz |

Barry A. Lazarus: Replace Rob Katz

Barry A. Lazarus

(Vail Resorts CEO) Rob Katz needs to go. Fueled by megalomania that seems limitless, Katz is taking Vail Resorts down. The financial bottom line is plummeting, real estate development is stagnant, and skier visits are flat. VR stock is tanking. More importantly, Katz seems bent on offending nearly everyone in the ski industry. Tongues wagged when Katz moved the corporate office from Avon to Broomfield, near Denver -not dissimilar to a combat general in Afghanistan managing his troops from Miami Beach.

Katz’s rage seems as infinite as the powder in Vail’s back bowls. Vail’s CEO tries to control the message. He removed VR from Colorado Ski Country USA, the advertising arm of skiing in Colorado, crippling its budget. VR no longer supports a children’s ski program that has for years brought disadvantaged youth to the mountains to ski.

Katz refuses to shoulder blame. When a reporter at the Summit Daily calls for more transparency from Vail, he complains. Spinmeisters aside, it is chilling to think that editorial freedom is being attacked by Katz. Further, Mr. CEO is not above hectoring the Breckenridge Town Council and lecturing them on how to do business. Maybe Breckenridge should change its name to “Vail Light.”

Rob Katz needs to be replaced. This is a call to the Vail Resorts Board to find a leader with depth, the ability to see all sides, and an individual who can relate to others.

Editor’s note: VR’s stock, which dipped to $14.76 in March, closed at $39.59 Friday.

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