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Tribute to Stan Fulton ’49

Las Vegas resident Stanley E. Fulton ’49, beloved alumnus and benefactor of Randolph-Macon Academy, passed away January 4, 2018. Mr. Fulton grew up in Hancock, MD. He attended Randolph-Macon Academy for his freshman and sophomore years (1945-47), and though he transferred to Mercersburg Academy, he always cherished his time at R-MA. From Mercersburg, he went on to attend the University of Maryland, eventually leaving college to serve in the U.S. Air Force in the 1950's.

At the conclusion of his Air Force service, Mr. Fulton embarked on an impressive entrepreneurial career. He built and operated several cable television systems, built and managed a 135-unit apartment complex in Las Vegas, and was the majority owner of an electronic manufacturing company before becoming involved in the gaming industry.

Stan Fulton '49 receives his honorary diploma from R-MA President Brig Gen David C. Wesley

In 1976, he acquired his first gaming license in the State of Nevada and his company at that time, Fortune Coin, developed the first multi-line video slot machine and video poker machines. Subsequently, he helped to build one of the largest gaming routes in Nevada with Gaming and Technology, and then founded Anchor Coin in 1989. Anchor Coin, which became Anchor Gaming, operated a slot machine route in Nevada and casinos in Colorado. In conjunction with International Game Technology, the company developed innovative gaming machines, including Wheel of Gold, the predecessor to Wheel of Fortune. In the year 2000, he sold his interest in Anchor Gaming to the company, but in leaving, Mr. Fulton also acquired Sunland Park Racetrack & Casino in New Mexico. 

Mr. Fulton was widely recognized for his philanthropy. He always worked hard, saying that he found that the harder he worked, the luckier he got, and he passed that fortune on to organizations that impacted where he had come from and where he had made his home. The R-MA family will recognize his generosity to R-MA in recent years, as he donated the funds for the newest academic building, Stan Fulton Hall, which opened in 2009. On a less-known scale, he also provided funds that enabled the Academy to improve technology and academic offerings, increase financial aid, and expand marketing efforts.

In addition to his gifts to R-MA, Mr. Fulton made donations to his hometown of Hancock, MD; New Mexico State University; the City of Sunland Park; Gadsden Independent School District; Hope International University; the University of Nevada-Las Vegas; Central Christian Church; Keep Memory Alive; and the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health. 

Mr. Fulton received an honorary doctorate degree from New Mexico State University in May, 2003 and the University of Las Vegas in May, 1997.  He was awarded an honorary degree from Randolph-Macon Academy in 2016. He was honored as a Distinguished Nevadan in 1992, in recognition of his long-standing financial support of UNLV and the Las Vegas Community.  In November of 2013, he was given the Outstanding Philanthropist award by the Association of Fundraising Professionals of Las Vegas. He was also honored with the Outstanding New Mexico Leader in Philanthropy award in 2014. 

"Mr. Fulton was a friend to Randolph-Macon Academy and to me personally,” said R-MA President Brig Gen David C. Wesley, USAF, Retired. “I am grateful for the support and guidance he provided since my arrival at the Academy.  All of us will miss his humor, his generosity, and his insight."

Mr. Fulton is survived by his children, Deborah, Elizabeth (Thomas), Stanley (Mahalie), Michael, Lucinda and Virginia; and twelve grandchildren. His sons graduated from R-MA, Stanley in 1975 and Michael in 1976.

Some of the biographical information in this article is from Mr. Fulton's official obituary listed on