Annie Duke Biography

Annie Duke

Annie Duke earned an undergraduate degree in English and Psychology from Columbia University, and a master’s degree in Cognitive Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania, where she was a National Science Foundation fellow. She had finished the research for her doctorate when she decided the academic life was not for her. With the help of her brother, she began a rewarding career as a professional poker player. Duke played her first hand of poker in 1991 in Las Vegas in a $1/$3 hold’em game, and by 1994 had finished in the money in three events at the World Series of Poker. In 2004, she won a WSOP bracelet in the $2,000 buy-in Omaha high/low tournament, and followed that achievement by winning the $2 million top prize in the WSOP’s Tournament of Champions. In 2010, she won the NBC Heads-Up Championship, taking home the $500,000 winner’s purse.
The mother of four, Duke’s focus over the past few years has been on teaching, business, charity and writing. As an industry advocate and proponent of online poker, she has appeared as an expert witness before the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary and Financial Services committees. She also gained international recognition through her appearance on NBC’s Celebrity Apprentice in 2009, finishing as runner-up to Joan Rivers. Her first book, Annie Duke: How I Raised, Folded, Bluffed, Flirted, Cursed and Won Millions at the World Series of Poker, was released in 2006. Her second book, Decide to Play Great Poker, has received rave reviews since its release in 2011.
Learn more about Annie at her website,, or follow her on Twitter @AnnieDuke.