Making the Case: Jennifer Harman and the Poker Hall of Fame

Jennifer Harman has a strong case for inclusion in the Poker Hall of Fame's Class of 2013.

Jennifer Harman has a strong case for inclusion in the Poker Hall of Fame’s Class of 2013.

The World Series of Poker released the candidates for the 2013 Poker Hall of Fame Class last week. Ten players, all hoping to receive poker’s highest honor, were nominated. In the lead up to the announcement of the Class of 2013 BLUFF is making the case for each of the nominees in a series of stories. The series continues with Jennifer Harman.

Of the 44 people who currently sit in the Poker Hall of Fame, only two of the members are women. Poker is admittedly a male-dominated industry because of the sheer disproportionate ratio of men to women, but there should be a third female presence joining the group as part of the Class of 2013.

Jennifer Harman has spent the better part of the last 30 years crushing live games throughout Nevada and California, with a tournament record that dates back almost 20 years. Harman became the first woman to win two open bracelet events all the way back in 2002, with Vanessa Selbst only matching the feat in 2012. She has over $2.5 million in career tournament earnings, and that just scratches the surface of her success.

Harman made her first WSOP final table back in 1996 and earned her first bracelet four years later. That victory in 2000 came in the $5,000 No Limit Deuce-to-Seven event, in a game she had never played and against a field that is widely recognized as one of the strongest in tournament poker every year. Harman’s second victory at the WSOP was in a $5,000 Limit Hold’em event, and to date she has just under $1 million lifetime WSOP earnings.

Much of Harman’s stature in the game comes from her experiences in some of the biggest cash games in the world, though. She’s been a regular in Bobby’s Room at the Bellagio for well over a decade, and Harman was even a part of ‘The Corporation’ that took on Andy Beal in the biggest cash games in the world back in 2006.

Much of this was accomplished despite a series of health issues that Harman has had to deal with since her teenage years, which led to two separate kidney transplants. Harman does a great deal of charity work for both CODA (Creating Organ Donation Awareness), which she created, as well as the NSPCA (Nevada Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals). The Jennifer Harman Charity Poker Tournament raised significant sums of money and helped raise the profile of charitable giving in the poker world.

Harman helped to pave the way for the female stars of the game, players like Selbst, Annette Obrestad, Liv Boeree, Vanessa Rousso and many others. Her competition for a spot in the Class of 2013 is fierce, but Harman’s entire body of work merits tremendous consideration when the ballots are cast.

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Tim Fiorvanti

Tim Fiorvanti graduated from St. John's University with a B.S. in Journalism in 2008. After several years in the industry, he started working for BLUFF in the summer of 2010. He worked his way up at BLUFF and joined full time as a Senior Writer in April of 2012. Fiorvanti now serves as the Managing Editor of BLUFF. He's a tortured Mets and Jets fan, along with several other frustrating allegiances, but he's also a two-time defending BLUFF Fantasy Football Champion.
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