Those who fly United this month and enjoy the game of poker will have a pleasant way to pass the time en-route to their destination thanks to a feature story on PokerStars’ sponsored pro Vanessa Selbst, who has been referred to as the “first lady” of the game.
Selbst, a 30-year old professional poker player who has already more than $10.5 million in live event cashes according to The Hendon Mob database, reveals a considerable amount of information about her poker philosophy and status as a masculine-gendered woman in the article, which can be read here.
Selbst is an undergraduate of Yale University who has up to this point placed her law career to one side as she achieves greatness in a game that has traditionally been dominated by men.
United Hemisphere magazine contributor Steve Friess, who followed the native New Yorker at different times during the 2014 World Series of Poker, sheds Selbst’s profession as well as her philanthropic efforts and position as a gay woman in a positive light.
Friess reflects upon several key moments in the young first lady’s poker career, including a “rite of passage” incorrect read during a 2006 WSOP final table, as well as a now-famous bluff Selbst engineered against 2012 Big One for One Drop Winner Antonio Esfandiari during a PokerStars.net The Big Game Season 2 episode in 2011.
According to the article, Selbst dabbled in the law profession by taking a consultant job with the McKinsey & Company law firm early in her career, but ultimately decided on poker because she “was playing poker for one-third the amount of time and making three times as much money.”
Her recently-formed venture capital firm, Venture Justice, aims to “fund a legal fellowship in police accountability,” an issue that Selbst takes very seriously after she and several of her gay law student colleagues were mistreated at the hands of police during a social event in July 2009.
To date, Selbst is the only woman to ever reach the top worldwide ranking on the highly-respected Global Poker Index rankings, and is also the only woman to eclipse $10 million in live tournament winnings.