Training Speaker Annie Duke

Annie Duke

Author, Decision Strategist, & Former Professional Poker Player

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    Pennsylvania, USA

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About Speaker Annie Duke…

Annie Duke leverages her expertise in the science of smart decision making to excel at pursuits as varied as championship poker to public speaking. On February 6, 2018, Annie’s first book for general audiences, Thinking in Bets: Making Smarter Decisions When You Don’t Have All the Facts, was released by Portfolio, an imprint of Penguin Random House. In this book, Annie reveals to readers the lessons she regularly shares with her corporate audiences, which have been cultivated by combining her academic studies in cognitive psychology with real-life decision making experiences at the poker table.

For two decades, Annie was one of the top poker players in the world. In 2004, she bested a field of 234 players to win her first World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet. The same year, she triumphed in the $2 million winner-take-all, invitation-only WSOP Tournament of Champions. In 2010, she triumphed in the prestigious NBC National Heads-Up Poker Championship. Prior to becoming a professional poker player, Annie was awarded a National Science Foundation Fellowship to study Cognitive Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania.

Annie now spends her time writing, coaching, and speaking on a range of topics such as decision fitness, emotional control, productive decision groups, and embracing uncertainty. She is a regularly sought-after public speaker, addressing thousands in keynote remarks at conferences for organizations ranging from the Investment Management Consultants Association to the Big Ten Conference. She has  been brought in to speak to the executive teams or sales forces of organizations like Marriott, Gaylord Resorts, and Ultimate Software, among others. Annie is also a sought-after speaker in the financial sector, with clients such as Susqehanna International Group and CitiBank. She regularly shares her observations on decision making and critical thinking skills on her blog, Annie’s Analysis, and shares her poker knowledge in a series of best-selling poker instruction and theory books, including, Decide to Play Great Poker and The Middle Zone: Mastering the Most Difficult Hands in Hold’em Poker, which were both co-written with John Vorhaus.

More About Annie…

A master storyteller, Annie has performed three times for The Moth, an organization that preserves the art of spoken word storytelling. One of her stories was selected by The Moth as one of their top 50 stories and featured in the organization’s first-ever book. Her passion for making a difference has helped raise millions for charitable causes. In 2006, she founded Ante Up for Africa along with actor Don Cheadle and Norman Epstein, which has raised more than $4 million for Africans in need. She has also served on the board of The Decision Education Foundation; in 2009, she appeared on The Celebrity Apprentice, and raised $730,000 for Refugees International, a charity that advocates for refugees around the world; in October 2013, Annie became a national board member for After School All-Stars; in 2014, Annie co-founded the non-profit, How I Decide, with the goal of helping young people develop the essential life skills of critical thinking and decision making: in 2015, she became a member of the NationSwell Council, and in 2016, she began serving on the board of directors of The Franklin Institute, one of America’s oldest and greatest science museums.

Testimonials 4

  • “Annie showed us how to scale thoughtful risk taking in a complex organization and in so doing realize the dream of Collaborative Agility! And she helped me hold up a mirror to my own biases and self-limiting beliefs, helping me let go and grow toward  becoming the leader I have always wanted to be.”

    Jeff Westphal

    CEO and Co-owner, Vertex Inc.

  • “Annie was engaging, incredibly interesting and articulate, authentic, warm and impactful, We are so grateful that Annie generously gave her time to our group.”

    Sherry Cefali

    Vice President, Women's Leadership Council

  • “Annie Duke was a homerun at the Mid-Year Meeting. The title of her presentation… had people intrigued even before the program began. her engaging style and informative insights on how to lessons learned at the poker table might be applied in the business arena, including the trial of cases, kept her audience of lawyers, spouses and guests riveted from start to finish.”

    Herman Russomanno

    President, International Academy of Trial Lawyers

  • “Annie Duke’s extraordinary like experience combined with her incisive brain and her clued-up attitude all combine together for unique and compelling listening.”

    Mike Faith


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