Las Vegas Events President Pat Christenson to join National Wrestling Hall of Fame Board of Governors

By Michael Mack, Las Vegas Events | April 15, 2019, 1:01 p.m. (ET)
LAS VEGAS – The National Wrestling Hall of Fame announced that Las Vegas Events President Pat Christenson has been approved as one of two new members of the Board of Governors, effective with the next board meeting on May 30, 2019. Christenson will join fellow NCAA Champion Stewart Carter in that role.

"We are pleased to add Stewart Carter and Pat Christenson to our Board," said Tom Slowey, Chairman of the Board of Governors. "In addition to a tremendous passion for wrestling and an appreciation for the effect it has had on their lives, Stewart and Pat each possess an extensive and varied set of professional skills that will be extremely beneficial to our organization."

Christenson has been president of LVE since 2001. He is responsible for securing "Signature Events" and then ensuring their growth and success. During his tenure, LVE has increased the number of events it has supported from 21 in 2001 to an average of 40 over the past five years.

Most notably, the list includes the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, four conference basketball tournaments, Electric Daisy Carnival, Rock in Rio, Life Is Beautiful, USA Sevens, NBA Summer League and the partnership with the USBC. The non-gaming economic impact of these events has increased from $108.9 million in 2001 to an average of more than $535.8 million over the last five years.

Christenson walked onto the University of Wisconsin wrestling team in 1972 after being a two-time state qualifier for Oak Creek High School. Four years later, he won the 1976 NCAA championship at 167 pounds as an unseeded wrestler. Christenson upset No. 2 seed Jerry Villecco of Penn State in the first round and No. 3 seed Joe Carr of Kentucky in the semifinals before beating No. 5 seed Dan Wagemann of Iowa in the finals. Christenson placed fourth at the Big Ten tournament in 1973 and third in 1974 and 1976 while also wrestling in the East-West All-Star Classic as a senior. He was co-captain of the Badgers wrestling team as a senior and was also the recipient of the Big Ten Medal for athletic and academic achievement.

Christenson coached briefly at Waunakee (Wisconsin) High School, leading the team to three conference titles, a regional championship, a sectional championship and a runner-up finish at the state tournament in 1980. He was recognized as an Outstanding American by the Nevada Chapter of the Hall of Fame in 2007.

Editor's Note: Pat Christenson and Las Vegas Events played a role in helping bring the 2015 World Wrestling Championships and the 2008 Olympic Trials for Wrestling and Judo to Las Vegas, and has been supportive of numerous major wrestling events held in the city.