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Annie Duke

Author. Speaker. Decision Strategist.

Annie Duke

Annie loves to dive deep into decision making under uncertainty. Her latest obsession is on the topic of quitting. In particular, she is on a mission to rehabilitate the term and get people to be proud of walking away from things.

Annie is an author, speaker, and consultant in the decision-making space, as well as Special Partner focused on Decision Science at First Round Capital Partners, a seed stage venture fund. Annie’s latest book, Quit: The Power of Knowing When to Walk Away, was released in 2022 from Portfolio, a Penguin Random House imprint. Her previous book, Thinking in Bets, is a national bestseller. As a former professional poker player, she has won more than $4 million in tournament poker. During her career, Annie won a World Series of Poker bracelet and is the only woman to have won the World Series of Poker Tournament of Champions and the NBC National Poker Heads-Up Championship. She retired from the game in 2012. Prior to becoming a professional poker player, Annie was awarded a National Science Foundation Fellowship to study Cognitive Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania. In 2023 Annie completed her PhD in Cognitive Psychology at UPenn.

Annie is the co-founder of The Alliance for Decision Education, a non-profit whose mission is to improve lives by empowering students through decision skills education. She is a member of the National Board of After-School All-Stars and the Board of Directors of the Franklin Institute.

Annie’s Timeline

Published Quit: The Power of Knowing When to Walk Away

From the bestselling author of Thinking in Bets comes a toolkit for mastering the skill of quitting to achieve greater success.

Read MoreOctober 4, 2022

Joined First Round Capital Partners as Special Partner focused on Decision Science

First Round Capital brought on Annie Duke as a Special Partner in Decision Science focused on coaching First Round VCs and their founders through challenging decisions.

Read MoreApril 6, 2022

Published How To Decide: Simple Tools For Making Better Choices

In the follow-up to her national best seller, Thinking In Bets, Annie merges her poker expertise with her cognitive psychology research to create a series of tools anyone can learn to make better decisions.  Grab your copy now.

Read MoreOctober 13, 2020

Published Thinking In Bets: Making Smarter Decisions When You Don’t Have All the Facts, her First Book for General Audiences

Thinking In Bets: Making Smarter Decisions When You Don’t Have All the Facts, teaches readers to get comfortable with uncertainty and make smarter decisions in any situation

Read MoreFebruary 6, 2018

Joined The Franklin Institute Board, 2016

Annie was asked to join the board of directors of the Franklin Institute, one of America’s oldest and greatest museums.

Read MoreJuly 11, 2016

Co-Founded Alliance for Decision Education

Launched nonprofit to help young people develop the essential life skills of critical thinking and decision making.

Read MoreMarch 28, 2014

Became a board member for After School All-Stars, 2013

Annie joined Arnold Schwarzenegger at After School All-Stars to help provide comprehensive after-school programs that keep children safe and help them succeed in school and in life.

Read MoreApril 4, 2013

Became a Moth Storyteller, 2011

Annie took the stage for the first time to tell her story “A House Divided” in front of a live audience

Read MoreMay 3, 2011

First Poker Strategy Book Published, 2011

Annie wrote her first book Decide to Play Great Poker, a strategy book for no-limit hold’em, was published in June 2011.

Read MoreMarch 28, 2011

Appeared on Hit TV Show, “Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?”, 2010

Was a contestant on the hit TV Show hosted by Jeff Foxworthy

Read MoreMay 3, 2010

Won NBC National Heads’-Up Poker Championship, 2010

After taking time off from poker to put her family first, Annie returned to the table and won.

Read MoreMay 3, 2010

Finalist on Celebrity Apprentice, 2009

Annie was the second place victor in Season 8, raising $700,000 for her selected charity, Refugees International

Read MoreMay 3, 2009

Showcased Her Trivia Skills On 1 VS 100, 2007

Appeared on the hit NBC game show hosted by Bob Saget, where she competed against a mob of 100 other contestants

Read MoreMay 3, 2007

Co-Founded Ante Up For Africa, 2007

Annie joined up with a friend to create charity poker tournaments that raised more than $700,000 over four years.

Read MoreMarch 28, 2007

Authored First Book, 2005

Annie wrote her autobiography How I Raised, Folded, Bluffed, Flirted, Cursed, and Won Millions at the World Series of Poker.

Read MoreMay 3, 2005

Won Her First WSOP Bracelet, 2004

Annie bested a field of 234 players to win her first WSOP bracelet

Read MoreApril 4, 2004

Winner of WSOP Tournament of Champions, 2004

The same year that Annie bested a field of 234 players to win her first WSOP, she also won the Tournament of Champions

Read MoreMarch 28, 2004

Delivered First Speech on Strategic Decision Making, 2002

Spoke to the leadership of a privately-owned hedge fund, Parallax Fund, L.P.

Read MoreMay 3, 2002

Beginner’s Luck, 1992

After being encouraged by her brother, Annie played in the Crystal Lounge in Billings, Montana before moving to Las Vegas to play professionally.

Read MoreMarch 28, 1992

Awarded A National Science Foundation Fellowship, 1998

Annie was awarded a National Science Foundation Fellowship to study Cognitive Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania after graduating with a double major in English and Psychology from Columbia University.

Read MoreMarch 28, 1988

Academic Foundation, 1987

Before even playing poker, Annie double-majored in English and psychology, then went on to pursue a doctorate in cognitive linguistics.

Read MoreApril 4, 1987