Born Anne LaBarr Lederer, Annie Duke is the daughter of two
teachers - Rhoda S. and Richard Lederer. Annie thought she would
become a teacher like her parents, but in the midst of research for
her doctorate in Cognitive Psychology at the University of
Pennsylvania, she proposed to long-standing friend Ben Duke. Annie
subsequently abandoned her studies for a life of romantic poverty
in Billings, Montana with Ben Duke, and began playing poker in the
local rooms to pay the mortgage on their first home.
Annie Duke won her first World Series of Poker bracelet in 2004,
beating 234 players in the $2,000 buy-in Omaha Hi/Lo Split. In the
same year she took $2 million in the invitation only,
winner-takes-all No Limit Texas Hold'em WSOP Tournament of
In 2005, Duke released her biography "Annie Duke: How I raised,
bluffed, flirted, cursed and won millions at the World Series of
Poker." She has also released a series of poker DVDs. Annie
currently works as a consultant for online poker site UB.com, and
is highly sought after for her poker knowledge and skills, having
coached the likes of Matt Damon and Ben Affleck.
Interesting Fact: Annie Duke is the sister of poker pro Howard
Lederer. It was Howard who advised Duke to enter the 2004 WSOP, and
she ended up knocking him out of the tournament.