AC Casino Executive Ends His Career After 42 Years

It is finally time for a top Atlantic City casino executive to hang up his boots after a long and exciting journey.

Steve Callender, one of Atlantic City’s finest has been in the game for more than 4 decades. He was there during the legalization of gaming in 1978 and during the economic meltdown that shut down five casinos a decade ago. He was also a witness to the recent recovery of Atlantic City after the Covid-19 pandemic put a stop to the gaming business.

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Serving as the current president of the Casino Association of New Jersey and the president of Caesars Entertainment Inc’s Atlantic City casinos, Callender has contributed to the growth of the industry during its toughest 12 months.

On Friday, Callender officially announced his retirement

“It’s time, it’s been almost 43 years and there’s other things I want to do with my life,” Callender said.

After the acquisition of Caesars Entertainment in 2020 by Eldorado Resorts, Callender was assigned to oversee the company’s Eastern region.

Anthony Carano, COO and President of Caesars Entertainment, described Callender as “a true gaming trailblazer”.

“Not many of us can say we were there at the start of something and helped steer it into a powerhouse industry over a four-decades-long career. Steve’s passion for our business and its people made him a tremendous leader in both our company and the industry. Steve will be greatly missed,” Carano said.

Carano and CMO Josh Jones will take over Callender’s duties as general managers at Tropicana, Caesars, and Harrah’s Resort in Atlantic City, Harrah’s Philadelphia, and Horseshoe Baltimore.

What’s next for Callender? Well, he seems to be following the footsteps of most well-to-do American retirees. Being a frequent traveler and an avid golfer, Callender is looking to make new experiences.

“I want to have some time off where I can travel around the country,” he said. “I’m trying to play golf in every state.”

Among the many things he already has on his to-do-list, Callender is also looking to spend enough time with family. He is a grandpa to six grandchildren who live close by.

Callender is one of the oldest executives in the Atlantic City market with so many years of experience behind him. His career took off in 1978, the year Resorts International Hotel Casino officially launched.

It was the first U.S casino to open outside of Nevada and the pioneer of Atlantic City East Coast gambling monopoly. It can be said that Callender worked his way to the top. He was with the casino when it launched working as a craps dealer. Thanks to his intellect and high-end skills, he started advanced up the corporate ladder.

“I’ve been blessed and I’ve done the best I could everywhere I’ve been,” he said. “I did well for myself and, hopefully, I made every property better than I found it. That was my goal.”’

Caesar’s Entertainment – One of NJ’s Finest

Caesars Entertainment is one of the major contenders in New Jersey and other gambling markets in the US. Though the major gambling hub is far from being the top market leader, it does own a significant share in the market which it still holds.

2020 was a year that crippled many businesses no thanks to government restrictions that required most businesses to shut down for a time. Casinos operating under the brand had to close for several months which led to big drops in revenue. Still, Caesars was able to keep cash flowing with its online offers that grew in terms of memberships as the land-based casino sealed their doors.

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