Tom Axtel, general manager of Vegas PBS
Q: What are you reading?
A: Over the years I have developed the practice of reading three books at a time. One covers business leadership or technology. One explores history and one represents pop fiction. I am currently reading “Smarter Faster Better: The Transformative Power of Real Productivity” by Charles Duhigg; “An Army at Dawn: The War in North Africa 1942-1943,” volume 1 of Rick Atkinson’s Liberation Trilogy; and “The Last Mile” by David Baldacci.
Q: Where do you take clients to dinner?
A: I most often lunch with partners at Veranda at the Four Seasons and Lawry’s on Flamingo Road.
Q: What is your hobby or where do you play your favorite sport?
A: I swim at the Whitney Ranch pool in Henderson.
Q: How do you decompress after a hard week?
A: We have a half-acre home in Tucson. I decompress by trimming trees, cutting firewood, overcoming varmints who chew through drip irrigation, observing wildlife and hiking desert and mountain trails.
Q: What is the biggest challenge facing Las Vegas in the next five years?
A: Education is our biggest challenge economically. Although not widely recognized, high school graduation rates have vastly improved and are likely to continue improving. K-12 funding support should continue. But we should now concentrate on efforts to improve college graduation rates, “middle-skill” career and technical training needed for economic diversification, and programs to achieve top-tier research and academic status for UNLV. Socially, our biggest challenge is the rising percentage of families who live in poverty and the failure of our economy to produce high-wage jobs for a stable middle class.