About

My name is Dave Schwartz. This is my website, but you probably figured that out. If you knew me, you’d know that I sometimes say stupid, obvious things like that, mostly because I can’t think of anything witty and want to give you a reason to laugh. What else would you like to know about me?

I have a few jobs, three main ones. I direct the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, teach history there, and write for Vegas Seven magazine, CDC Gaming Reports, and a few other places. Books, too–don’t forget the books.

I was born in and grew up in Atlantic City, New Jersey, which has always been a punchline, although the joke has gotten more cutting lately. I went to Atlantic City High School and worked a lot of jobs around town. Some of my favorites were Mr. Peanut, cleaning the beach for the City of Ventnor City, night shift desk clerk, dishwasher, ice cream scooper, janitorial scientist, casino security officer, and, later, surveillance (it’s two separate departments). I worked in three casinos: Bally’s Grand, the Tropicana, and the Trump Taj Mahal. Two of them are closed now. That tells you a lot about Atlantic City, doesn’t it?

Then I went to college, where I got a BA (History and Anthropology) and MA (American History) from the University of Pennsylvania. After that, it was grad school in United States History at UCLA. I worked some more jobs there–a few favorites are museum security officer, arena event staff, graduate researcher, and SAT prep teacher. I got my Ph.D. in U.S. History from there in 2000, so when people want me to think I’m important they call me “Dr. Schwartz” even though I can’t heal the sick. I got the nickname “Doctor Dave” from the Vegas Internet Mafia so that’s what most of my social media handles are. It usually leads to disappointment (the first of many) when I explain to people that I cannot, in fact, provide medical care or advice (outside of “yeah, put some ice on that”).

Outside of my three (ish) jobs, I spend most of my time with my kids doing regular dad stuff and trying to maintain a middle class lifestyle. I also like staying in shape and playing video games. I’m really bad at most FPS, and I prefer turn-based strategy games like Civilization. But I don’t have a ton of free time, so I’m nowhere near to beating it on Immortal/Deity.

 

Writing

I love writing so I do a lot of it. I have a whole writing page that’s all about it, so check it out. It tells you where you can read my work and what awards I’ve won for it.

If you’re more instant gratification than that, here are some links to my books:

If you’re really instant gratification, you can buy these books from my humble Amazon store.

 

Teaching

This is the other thing I love doing. Right now I’m a part time instructor for UNLV’s Department of History, with three courses in the rotation: HIS 101, the US from colonization to 1877; HIS 102, the US from 1877 to today, and HIS 369, the history of casinos. I also teach seminars for the Honors College: my favorites are “Faces of Las Vegas” and non-fiction writing. I’ve taught a range of other classes, from SAT prep to hospitality management, in a variety of settings. My personal favorite is the short-lived Fairleigh Dickinson University Atlantic City extension in the Ocean One mall (now the Playground). It was surreal to be teaching like a responsible adult in the same place where I used to play arcade games.

In addition to my teaching at UNLV I do seminars and instruction for people in the casino industry and those who want to learn more about it. I can handle any group size and any duration, from an hour quickie intro to a weeks-long in-depth course. I mostly cover the history of casinos in Las Vegas and other places and the current state of the industry, but can customize talks or courses on a variety of topics.

I encourage you to learn more on my teaching page.

 

Talkingonstage1

This overlaps a little with teaching. People ask my opinion about things, mostly having to do with casinos, Las Vegas, Atlantic City, and related stuff.

At my day job I get many, many media inquiries–usually about 300 a year but it’s often more than that. I’ve been quoted by writers for the Associated Press, UPI, Reuters, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Wired, Congressional Quarterly Weekly, Indianapolis Star, Philadelphia Inquirer, New Orleans Times-Picayune, International Gaming and Wagering Business, Player, San Francisco Chronicle, Crane’s Business, Los Angeles Times, Reno Gazette Journal, Las Vegas Sun, Las Vegas Review-Journal, and many other newspapers and magazines.

Someone once thought it would be good to put me on TV, and others followed, so I’ve appeared in news stories about Las Vegas and gaming on CNN, CNBC, Speigel TV (Germany), Court TV, National Public Radio’s Marketplace, The Savvy Traveler, All Things Considered, and Morning Edition, CBC Radio, Swiss National Radio, CNN Radio, and on local news programs in Las Vegas, San Diego, Philadelphia, Lake Charles, Louisiana, and New York City. I’m also a member of the Vegas Gang podcast.

I’ve also been in several documentaries, including “Ten Things You Don’t Know About Las Vegas,” “All In: the Poker Movie,” “Secrets of the Palms,” “Secrets of New York New York,” “Vegas Whales Tales” (Travel Channel); “The History of Poker,” “Modern Marvels: Casino Technology,” and “Anything to Win” (History Channel). My personal favorite as “Ten Things” because I was a huge Henry Rollins fan as a kid. I got to meet him and he was totally thoughtful and cool.

I’ve also been an off-screen, usually uncredited, consultant for these and several other programs. If people want advice from someone with no training in film or TV production, I’m happy to oblige.

You can get all that for free, but if you’d like me to show up and speak with your group, hey, I can do that too. I have a few talks that are especially popular: “Seven Things You Should Know about Casinos” is great for a general conference audience in Las Vegas, and “How Bugsy Blew It: Leadership Lessons from a Las Vegas Legend” is a good management/leadership/motivational talk for business groups. I’ve recently talked about topics ranging from frontline casino risk management to the history of Las Vegas architecture. I can put together pretty much anything (within reason) for any size group.

You can learn more on the Talking page.

 

Social Media
Twitter: @drdave702
You Tube channel: DoctorDave702
Instagram: drdave702
Facebook: David G. Schwartz, writer
Linked In: DavidGSchwartz
I sometimes comment on Reddit as “grandissimo.” Mostly I lurk there.

 

Downloads

PDFs

Brief Biography

Curriculum Vitae