he American Gaming Association (AGA) announced Tuesday the induction of three honorees into the Gaming Hall of Fame’s Class of 2019: Elaine Hodgson, co-founder, president, and CEO of Incredible Technologies; Stanley Mallin, real estate, hotel, and casino developer; and Ernie Moody, president of Action Gaming and creator of Triple Play Poker.
Since its establishment in 1989, the Gaming Hall of Fame has recognized leaders who have distinguished themselves through significant contributions to the gaming industry.
“Elaine, Ernie, and Stanley are pioneers in the gaming industry and have earned their well-deserved induction into this elite group,” said Bill Miller, president and CEO of the American Gaming Association. “Under Elaine’s leadership, Incredible Technologies introduced the most successful pay-to-play game in the U.S., Ernie’s resilience and innovation changed the landscape of video poker, and Stanley’s contributions to the trend of themed casino properties are ubiquitous. We’re pleased to honor them with this great distinction.”
The 2019 inductees’ accomplishments include:
Elaine Hodgson, president and CEO, Incredible Technologies
In 1985, Hodgson founded Incredible Technologies (IT) in a basement with fewer than a dozen employees, establishing IT as a pinball and amusement gaming hardware manufacturer with co-founder Richard Ditton. In 1989, IT created Golden Tee Golf and in 2007 strategically decided to enter the casino gaming market. Today, IT is one of the fastest growing U.S. video slot game developers, with Hodgson overseeing all aspects of the company and its staff of more than 250. She takes great pride in the brand and reputation she’s built while breaking barriers and overcoming obstacles, and continues to guide her teams to create original products, focusing on their operator and player audiences, rather than competitors.
Ernie Moody, president, Action Gaming
In the 1990s, Moody created Triple Play Poker and several other poker games that are still performing strongly on casino floors, including Five Play, Ten Play, and Hundred Play Poker. He has created new video poker concepts such as Spin Poker, Super Times Pay Poker, and Ultimate X Poker, and continues to create games to this day. With 20,000 machines across North America utilizing his patents and inventions, he single-handedly changed the video poker industry, providing massive value to his casino customers, players, and to IGT, his longtime manufacturer and distributor. He has continued to invent games for nearly 20 years and is a prominent part of the Las Vegas community.
Stanley Mallin, real estate, hotel, and casino developer
Stan Mallin grew up in Kansas City, Missouri, and served in the U.S. Army during WWII. After the war, he completed his college years at the University of Missouri. It was during college where he and Jay Sarno forged their relationship and ventured into real estate and hotel/motel development. They built the well-known Atlanta Cabana hotel, Dallas Cabana, and Palo Alto hotels before their big venture into gaming and Las Vegas. In 1966, they opened Caesars Palace for $24 million, starting the trend of themed casinos in Las Vegas, and sold the property in 1969 for $60 million. He also introduced the concept of experiential casino properties with the opening of Circus Circus in 1968, which was leased in 1974 and ultimately sold to William Bennett and William Pennington.
An invitation-only ceremony honoring the inductees will take place during the Chairman’s Reception at the Global Gaming Expo (G2E).
Hall of Fame honorees are selected by an independent panel of gaming executives. This year’s selection committee members were: