Todd Berendji is Hoosier Park’s director of casino operations and unofficially titled “back-office entertainer”. When he’s not hard at work managing the latest in gaming technology he serves up consistent comic relief for those of us behind the scenes.
As Todd always says, “Your happiness is my happiness.” A proponent of enjoying life to the fullest, he keeps the atmosphere positive in even the most stressful situations. Todd is not your typical executive and he prefers it that way. You won’t find him in a stuffy office filled with accolades, but rather one with a Ben & Jerry’s bumper sticker that reads, “If it’s not fun, why do it?” In fact, you generally will not find Todd in his office at all. He is much more comfortable out with his team making decisions from eye level and spreading good energy. Whether it’s a practical joke, prank or just a good conversation, Todd strives to uplift those around him. Todd says, “Watching team members laugh, have fun and entertain guests is my greatest reward.” He brings out the extrovert in others as well and now receives his fair share of office pranks in return.
However, a director position at Hoosier Park isn’t all fun and games. With more than 2,000 slot machines and e-table games, there is always work to be done. Todd has brought in many new cutting-edge technologies as well, making Hoosier Park on par with the best casinos in the world.
While he thoroughly enjoys his work here at Hoosier Park, he had to earn his right to be crowned back office entertainer. Before Todd was even born, his career path was set in motion. His father was a prominent hotel and casino designer in Las Vegas and had a lot of influence on Todd as he grew up. His father did not plan for him to follow in his footsteps and had actually put down a deposit for him to attend law school. As Todd came of age, he decided that the gaming industry was a better fit for him and joined a management training program for casino resorts. Todd quickly caught on and soon found himself in the heart of Las Vegas.
Some of his biggest career achievements came at that time when he assisted in the openings of The Mirage, Bellagio, Wynn Las Vegas and Wynn Macau. While Todd thrived within the large corporations, he enjoyed the humbler culture he found with Wynn.
His experience opening casinos and his preference for a more grassroots company is what ultimately landed him in Indiana at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino. “The culture that has been cultivated and the closeness of the executive team reminded me a lot of Wynn Resorts when they were still relatively small and still growing: very family like and close,” Todd recollected.
Todd’s experience proved beneficial with the successful opening of the casino and its management to date. While he has had a lot of great experiences and met many good friends along the way, Todd Berendji is happy to call Hoosier Park Racing & Casino his home.