Eleven influential women in the poker world were nominated in this year's potential class of members into the Women Poker Hall of Fame. At the moment, only 19 women are members of this prestigious distinction. Among the notables who are current members... Linda Johnson, Cyndy Violette, Jen Harman, and Kathy Liebert.
The eleven nominees this year are worthy in one way or another, but it was good to see a diverse line up this time around featuring both players, industry and media. The 2018 potential noms include... Oscar-nominated actress and bracelet winner Jennifer Tilly heads the list along with Shirley Rosario, Kara Scott, Maria Ho, Haley Hintze, Angelica Hael, Terry King, Karina Jett, Lupe Soto, Hermance Blum, and Mandy Glogow.
At the 2005 World Series of Poker, Jen Tilly went deep in the Ladies Event and eventually won her first (and only) bracelet. Tilly is a frequent rounder in high-stakes games in and around Hollywood and most recently she appeared on an episode of the highly-popular Poker After Dark reboot. Tilly has almost $1 million in career earnings.
Shirley Rosario is one of the most inspiring stories in poker. The single mom and cancer survivor from Southern California is one of the premier Omaha 8 players in the L.A. poker scene and a top-notch HORSE player to boot, with a couple of California State Championship trophies after shipping back-to-back titles in 2009-10. Rosario won over $506K in tournaments highlighted by a final table appearance and fourth-place finish in the 2014 WSOP $10K Omaha 8. During the height of the poker boom, Rosario authored a website called Poker Babes.
Maria Ho is currently #10 on the all-time money winners among women. Ho banked over $2.7 million in tournament earnings and six 6-figure cashes. She was a runner-up in a 5K event at the 2011 WSOP and went deep in the 2007 Main Event. At the 2017 WSOP Europe in RozVegas, Maria Ho final tabled the event and took sixth place for a $202K score. Most recently, she finished in third place at the L.A. Poker Classic High Roller for a score worth $188K. Ho has also been a host and commentator for various poker events.
Good to see Haley Hintze get some love. She's been the hardest working woman in poker media since she got her start over a decade ago. Hintze is a former newspaper writer and legit journalist who joined the ranks of the poker industry at the onset of the poker boom. Her diligent research into the UB/Absolute Poker scandal is ranked among the best batch of journalism in poker media.
Terry King is old school. She was swimming with sharks in Sin City before most of us were even born. King won a bracelet in one of the earliest incarnations of the WSOP. She also was the first female to deal at the WSOP Main Event. She's been an influential poker room manager in Vegas and helped expanded the growth of poker since the 1970s.
Kara Scott got her start in poker as a presenter on the EPT and she worked her way to the top of the biz as the sideline reporter at the WSOP. The gregarious Canadian is also a valuable brand ambassador for 888poker. Scott is no slouch at the tables with over $660K in career winnings.
Lupe Soto and LIPS go hand-in-hand. Soto is one of the most pivotal people in the history of poker because of her dedication to expanding the voice of women in the gambling biz. She founded LIPS a.k.a. the Ladies International Poker Series, which helped spread the love of all things poker to women all over the globe.
Karina Jett won almost a half-million playing tournaments. She final tabled the WSOP Ladies event four times, including a runner-up finish in 2011. She's gonna bink it one of these days. In 2010, Jett banked $120K for winning the He Said, She Said edition of Poker After Dark.
I first met Angelica Hael in Australia at the Crown Casino in Melbourne, where she got her start in the gaming biz/poker industry. Since then she's worked for various industry leaders including partypoker. She's currently leading the Global Tour Management for the WPT and vice president of WPT Enterprise, Inc. For the industry side of things, Hael has been contribute immensely to expanding poker on a global scale.
Mandy Glogow is the showrunner of the WPT. That in itself is an insane job. Running any type of show is hectic chaos, let along running a show in the poker biz.
Hermance Blum worked for various gaming entities in Europe. She got her start with PokerStars a decade ago and eventually became France's country manager. She worked with PartyGaming for a while before she migrated to the WPT. According to the presser, "In 2014, Hermance was appointed General Manager WPT Europe to look after the Tour Management and Strategy. Her responsibilities include financial P&L and Operations as well as the contractual partnerships with WPT casinos and sponsors."
The inaugural class for the Women Hall of Fame included four sincere legends: Linda Johnson, Barbara Enright, Susie Isaacs, and Marsha Waggoner. The second-ever class inducted included three more highly-influential women: Jan Fisher, Cyndy Violette and June Field.
In 2010, three women were inducted including Jennifer Harman, Kathy Liebert and Billie Brown (the only posthumous selection for her contributions and excellence in poker). In 2011, a trio of women were inducted including Kristy Gazes, Margie Heintz, and Phyllis Caro. In 2012, the induction class featured Kathy Raymond and JJ Liu. In 2014, the induction class included Allyn Jaffrey Shulman and Deborah Giardina.
The last induction for the Women Poker Hall of Fame occurred in 2016. Debbie Burkhead and Victoria Coren Mitchell were members of class of 2016 and became the 18th and 19th member.
For more details visit the Women Poker Hall of Fame webpage.