Jennifer Harman


Jennifer Harman-Traniello is an American professional poker player and is considered by many as the best female poker player in the world.

Bio

Born (and raised) in Reno, Nevada, on November 29, 1964, Harman was first involved in card games when sat next to her father during his home games when she was only eight-years old. She learned by watching the cards, the players, and the strategies used. Jennifer was always plagued by chronic kidney problems and underwent a kidney transplant at an early age. She never saw this as a burden or an impediment. Kidney problems also afflicted her sister and her mother, who died from a kidney-related illness when Harman was 17.

By her teenage years, her passion for poker ran deep enough to get a fake ID to play in poker rooms. She later went to the University of Nevada, Reno to study biology, and put herself through school by playing poker and working as a waitress, one of the few regular jobs that she would ever hold. But after graduation she decided to play poker on a full-time basis. Her decision to play professional poker made her estranged from her father. For a few years they had of little contact, but eventually reconciled after she was finally able to convince him that she was supporting herself and that the game of poker required a great deal of skill and training.

Poker - Early Years

She didnít start playing poker for a living until she was about 21. Back then, she played mostly $10-$20, then moved up to $20-$40, and then $30-$60. She spent about seven years playing $20-$40, and no higher than $50-$100, then about another eight years playing from $75-$150 to $200-$400. She would build her bankroll and take shots at the bigger games and eventually move up to $3,000-$6,000 games. When she would lose, she would go back down in limits.

For some poker players, the road to becoming a professional is an easy one. For others, such as Jennifer's case, it wasn't so easy. In 1993, after a losing year and close to being broke, Jennifer considered quitting playing professionally. She was playing $50-$100 holdíem at the Mirage at the time, and, just to be safe, she borrowed $50,000 from a friend so that she could have an adequate bankroll to continue playing in that game. She started to do much better after that, and paid the loan off pretty quickly. Since then, she has stuck to limits she could afford and hasn't had to any more bankroll management issues. Her perseverance to get through those tough times just made her stronger.

Poker - Later Years

During late 1990's she played cash games with a group of other poker players who were also climbing the rungs of the professional poker ladder. Among these players were Daniel Negreanu (who Harman became good friends with), Doyle Brunson, and Chip Reese. It was because of these games that she was able to hone her skills, increase the limits she played at, and learn to play a wider variety of games. This was important because Harman played mostly Hold 'Em and didn't play too much of other poker games.

Harman won her first World Series bracelet in 2000 at the prestigious No-Limit Deuce-to-Seven Lowball Event. Prior to the event, she had never played the game before, and didn't even know anything about it. She only received a five-minute tutorial from a fellow pro before playing. The victory gave her some much-needed confidence in her ability to be successful at games other than Hold 'Em, as well confidence that she could succeed in tournaments. She won her second WSOP bracelet in 2002 at the $5,000 Limit Hold 'em event. She is the only woman to hold two bracelets in WSOP open events.

At the height of her success, though, Jennifer was again confronted by health problems with her kidneys. She noticed that she was getting very fatigued during preparations for the 2004 WSOP, and she sought medical attention. She got another kidney transplant and was forced to take a year off from poker in order to recover. She has been doing well since her return.

Even though poker has been her only source of income since she was 21, she has been investing her money the whole time she has been playing - unlike a lot of other professional poker players.

All of her accomplishments are impressive enough; the fact that she has had to do it in what traditionally has been a man's world makes it even more impressive. She has said that it probably helps her poker profits to be a woman because male players underestimate her and think that they can bluff her. This bias is reinforced by her stature, at only 5 feet 2 inches tall and around 100 pounds. But her un-intimidating physical presence and personal charm at the table belie her toughness and resourcefulness. What has been more difficult for her is earning respect as a player. But she is also an inspiration for countless female play pokers.

Harman has made the final table of the WPT and PPT. She has appeared on the GSN series "High Stakes Poker" and on the NBC series "Poker After Dark", where she won the tournament during Week 8. In 2007, Harman finished as runner up in the inaugural World Series of Poker Europe. She came in 2nd place in the HORSE event to Thomas Bihl.

Harman authored the chapter for limit hold'em for "Super System II". Harman is a member of "Team Full Tilt" at Full Tilt Poker. As of 2009, Harman's total live tournament winnings exceeded $2,300,000 with 24 cashes at the WSOP.

Poker - Cash game success

Harman is known a cash game specialist and she can regularly be found playing in the biggest live-action game in the world. She is the only female regular player in the "Big Game", the high-stakes cash game at the Bellagio with fellow high-stakes poker players, Doyle Brunson, Daniel Negreanu, David Benyamine and Barry Greenstein, at the $4000-$8000 level. She was rumored to have been involved in the largest cash game hand at 1.7 million. She was also an active member of "The Corporation", a group of high-stakes poker players (including Todd Brunson, Phil Ivey and Ted Forrest) who played Texas billionaire Andy Beal at limits of up to $100,000-$200,000.

She has, at times, tried to improve her tournament play, playing a few more than usually events at the World Series, rather than the cash games she normally plays. She has also specifically worked on improving her no-limit play, because she would like to win the Main Event someday.

Charity Poker

Harman found the non-profit organization Creating Organ Donation Awareness (CODA), and has raised money for the cause. She also donates time to raising money for the SPCA (Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals).

Harman is a frequent charity poker tournament host. In 2009, she organized a number of poker celebrities including ESPN analyst Lon McEachern and Howard Lederer in a two-day event that raised $111,000 for the National Kidney Foundation. She has also raised hundreds of thousands of dollars through live tournaments and online tournaments at Full Tilt. In 2009, she hosted the 3rd annual Jennifer Harman Charity Poker Tournament at the Venetian poker room in Las Vegas. The tournament has raised over half a million dollars.

Personal Life

When she isn't playing poker she likes to stay home and playing with her dogs as well as going to movies and hang out with friends. She is married to stylist Marco Traniello, who has since become a professional poker player as well. She says this has made it easier on her, since he how understands how she feels after suffering a big loss and lets her vent her frustration without taking it personal. He has been extremely supportive of her career.

COMMENTS:

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I watch the poker games alot but more when Jen is playing be side her being so good i think she a lovely lady and so cute and one day hope to meet her in person, hey jen the hell with the NEG. talk on here you just keep being you xoxoxoxo

kulchanstyl on December 27, 2010

The woman can play but she has always been butt-ugly,the picture is good.

headlessman1964 on March 3, 2008

She doesn't come close to Kathy Liebert in
tournaments!...THIS PICTURE IS GROSS

????? on December 1, 2007

She's probably the best female player out there but doesn't get nearly the respect she deserves.

bad_dog76 on November 30, 2007

Is she really this ugly?...She didn't seem to be this bad at a distance, in the casino.....but this picture is gross.

????? on November 6, 2006

she twitches her nose when she has a bad hand or in unsure of her strength. id take all her chips in no time. hee haw lil donk

DonkeySlayer on September 14, 2006

jennifer harman is the real deal and she is one of the least hyped players out there - the poker world always echos the "best female player" phrase. I wouldn't be surprised is she made more profit from actually playing poker than anyone under 45 - not including Ivey.

HPG ADMIN on August 17, 2006

Not much of a tournament player...supposed to be a money player...its the same old BS we here about Chip Reese...
all promotional hype...

Just like the total BS about the
player from Cincinnati a year or so ago, who suposedly used
to play every week and win $60,000 in a cash game in Ohio, quit playing and went into a construction business for
20 years, and is now going to play again....NO MOTHER F***
ever would have quit playing if he was winning $60 k every
week in the 1980's....ALL THIS IS BS

????? on August 17, 2006

Is it easy to make a ppt final table?

alan on August 4, 2006

Yes, one of the 10 best women.

????? on July 31, 2006

Best woman player ever. Top10 in holdem

jarrel on July 25, 2006

Looked better with the baby fat on her face a couple years ago..........In tournaments Annie Duke would be my pick.

????? on October 31, 2005

I've heard that Jennifer and Danny are just best friends. I don't know if Jennifer is with anyone, but I think she and Phil Gordon would make a cute pair. Seems like after her trasplant, she's become a lot more aggressive...you go girl!

Poker Fan on July 27, 2005

MATASAW? so you dont know how to spell his name and you dont know his life style....god you suck. oh yea its........MATUSOW

hahah on July 21, 2005

"i think danny negronu or wahatever his name is got he hots for her. cant really blame him.veary natruall"

---DUDE....NO......wow, I hope you stay in school bro and get help with that spelling, jesus

maury on July 21, 2005

yea.. she's hot.. and who cares about her nl game.. it's not that strong, but the money is at the limit cash games.. not the nl tournaments

a fan on July 14, 2005

she just got busted out in the wsop! full house to str8 flush... yukky!

pubiclice on July 6, 2005

doylebrunson super system 11 that book man its thick

bruce on July 5, 2005

i think danny negronu or wahatever his name is got he hots for her. cant really blame him.veary natruall.

brack on July 5, 2005

After I had first read "Limit Hold'em" in Doyle Brunson's "Super System 2", I have been wishing to have the chance to tell you how deeply impressed I was by this chapter: it's clear, concise, fundamental, fun to read. In short: I like it, and for me it's the base to understanding and playing poker. I wish I could write my "technical manuals" like you do. Thank you, and all the best to you and your family.

Walter Grabowski on July 3, 2005

Maybe overrated, because she is a woman, but she could hold her own. The best female player and one of the top 20 players in the world.

greatwhite on July 2, 2005

For me Jennifer is the Goldie Hawn of poker. Simply cute :)

Unregistered on June 29, 2005

I like her new haircut with the kinda blob hair look. Yeah, she's hot.

Observer on May 26, 2005

thats the kind of girl i dont mind going out with girls that got money and likes to gamble so jennifer lets say you and go out and eat and drink and gamble.

bruce on May 24, 2005

Hey gerard, annie duke looks better are you blind dumbass

bitchkiller on April 27, 2005

Annie Duke looks and plays better. To most men what else matters. Either of those two would take my cash and just about everyone else on here. Good luck and keep winning at the great game of poker

Gerard Baisch on April 23, 2005

Women poker players are overrated, nothing new here.

King Ten suited on April 23, 2005

Not only the best poker player....lots of sex apeal. BiG fan of yours.. XOXO

morderca on April 21, 2005

Jennifer- I Am A Kidney/pancrease Transplant Survivor, If You Ever Need To Talk About Your Transplant Or Even Some Of The Things The Drugs Are Doing- Pls Dont Hesitate To Email Me !

BBARTAY007 on April 19, 2005

This Women is one of the greatest ever to play the game in all it's forms. Her name belongs beside the brunson's and baldwin's.

Unregistered on April 5, 2005

She is a brave woman. Who gives a damned about poker, when her life could have been over? I think some of you should be ashamed. Tell me something braintrust(s) Why is it that she can be found playing on TV and you can't? Answer that one. Oh, ya,thats right..She is the terrible player.

GOP FAN on April 1, 2005

Wow is she hot

Bill on March 31, 2005

One of the best players ever. Male/Female, doesn't matter. Very Few males, even pros will sit down 4k/8k and She's doin it regular. I don't have the balls to sit $4/$8.

Bender04 on March 25, 2005

i Guess the girl on tilt is somewhat based on her. the girl on tilt is hotter but she kinda looks like her. they smile the same. Id love to meet a girl who could play poker like this .

MikeD on March 22, 2005

Love that pout when she's concentrating on a hand. That pout beat me out of a large pot till I figured it out...

healeydays on March 10, 2005

Jen is one of the coolest ladies I know. She can and has played with the best and she is willing to be social with people. Good luck with everything.

Tom on March 3, 2005

I think you are better than Annie hands down so I guess that makes you the best Female of all time

Joe Bob on March 2, 2005

Jennifer, Doubt if you will ever get a chance to read this, but I hope you do. I just finished reading he section you wrote on Limit Hold 'em in Doyle Bruson's Super System 2 - and it was very well written and very informative. I'm just starting out playing the cheaper limit games $2-4 and $3-6 and some small no limit hold tournaments where buys in range from $25-100. My question is this? At what range does your betting strategy work best? I mean when I play low limits it's virtually impossible to bluff anyone or play meduim hands because everyone calls and calls...it seems counter productive? I can't afford a hugh bankroll, but I like to at some point within a years time feel comfortable playing $10-20 or $15-30. How much a bankroll do you think I might need to substain any loses I might encounter. Just looking for some insight. I also found out it seems tournements are not that easy to play. The best I have done so far was 40th out of a 340 player(my second time playing that tournament) field with a small $25 buy in..No Limit and even then I was short stacked and blinds were $2000-4000 and going up. From what I gain was it seems like you must be extremely agressive in the beginning and get a jump on the chip lead...as you stated before pound, pound pound!! I love playing cards and have since I was young...always hiomes mostly when I was in my teens, but things just changed and I never stuck with it...just different prioroties, until they started to show the tournaments on TV. Anyway hope to hear back from and I wish you best in future and hope you win the Big One soon! D

dyaugo on February 14, 2005

Jennifer - God bless you and take care of yourself.

jbare on February 3, 2005

Have to agree with Pay2c, good luck jen.

uk defender on January 13, 2005

you been dealt a lousy hand. But i know you can bluffyour way out of it. you can win this one Jen. You go girl, get that (WSOP)

ace-jamesjimjo12 on January 13, 2005

speedy recovery jen ur a great player and a totsl hottie,,,just thought id throw that in

iveyfan05 on January 3, 2005

Jennifer, I have heard you need a kidney transplant. I have friend a vet who needs one! He lives just above Waco ans goes to Dallas VA. The told him to go to Nashville. For some reason, the Va said kidneys were more available there. If my memory serves 3 or 4 month timetable. Best of Luck. 2Jacks

2jacks/fabergeeggs on December 21, 2004

BTW, jen harman rules, a great player to watch.Keep it up

Unregistered on December 20, 2004

She is better than Annie Duke at Hold'em in my opinion and she is aggressive enough to be a threat in ANY tourney.

mje on December 11, 2004

I heard news that she collapsed after playing at foxwoods and is intensive care.Is this true?

colin spinks on November 16, 2004

jen, get well.

nevadanancy on November 13, 2004

Have been praying for you. Would like someone to let me know how you are doing.

Big-Possum on November 11, 2004

Thanks for the info Green, I've been wondering about her health. Best wishes Jen, and hurry back.

BudFarmer on November 3, 2004

Jen-besides playing tournament poker for fun, my wife and I do living kidney donation research in St. Louis at Washington University Medical School. Since we heard about your recent transplant we've been curious to hear how things were with you. All the best to you in your recovery. We would love to seriously discuss the 'Jen Harman Challenge' to raise awareness about living donation and think that we could help - if interested, please contact us (Brian and Amy Waterman) at [email]brian@watermanresearch.com[/email] or [email]awaterma@im.wustl.edu[/email]. thanks!

brian-watermanresearch on October 21, 2004

get well soon so you can return to wpt

sonny b. on October 18, 2004

i have a question about Full tilt Poker.why dont the Pro's ever play in the "Play Money" catagory? I mean what about us poor ppl that dont have real money accounts...we cant play nor talk with the pro's...ijust think the Pro's should play in "play money" as well as real money. my FTP s/n is InsaneJoker654

shadowjoker002 on October 16, 2004

It does get a little bit boring reading all these negative comments and insults on this page,thank you for all the positive inspirational ones and good luck in your poker games.Happiness and health. Jen

jen harman on October 13, 2004

I recently had a kidney transplant. You are all missing the point. This was a very ill woman that courageously hung in and played inspite of her serious illness. My prayer is that she gets well soon.

Nonna on October 8, 2004

jenny, honey, good luck on the transplant. my prayers are with you.

lucky texas lady on October 3, 2004

Saw her playing 3000-6000 at bellagio.Its amazing to watch these players playing with such life changing amounts.

Unregistered on September 30, 2004

Heard about her kidney problems and the transplantation. I wish u the very best luck, Jennifer! Just seen u on tv, but u play great poker and u seem like a nice person too.

Indiscreet on September 28, 2004

she's pretty good, but i think she should stick to the high stake games @ the bellagio.

jimmie julion on September 21, 2004

I think that Jennifer is amazing, and all that bs about her skills was, no doubt, posted by wanna be, WSOP-watchin', never-been-to-a-casino players who think that testerone-driven aggressive play is the only proper approach to NL--which is crap. Speedy recovery to Jen! (Also, as an aside, it DOES make a difference to some of us that she is a woman, because it makes we that are in some sort of minority at the tables learn to exploit the difference and feel more confident to f-up a-hole straight white male players! Take it from this fag....)

slick willy on August 30, 2004

Personally, Jennifer is a true inspiration to me. I am currently on dialysis and awaiting a kidney transplant myself. I am also on the fence and considering a life that includes alot more poker playing as a source of income. I have entered 3 small tournaments in the past 6 months and have made it to the final table in all three, including a first place win at the Edgewater in Laughlin. Anybody have any advice... I am not arrogant enough yet not to take it!!!

KGarofalo on August 17, 2004

thank you chris, milky and Real Poker for pointing out the obvious, it's not about wanting to bang her or how pretty/ugly she is -- she's a player. Good days, bad days - Good decisions and bad. Someone doesn't make a living off of poker for as many years as she has if she doesn't know what she is doing.

poker girl on August 16, 2004

There's just something really attractive and fun bout her. I wish she would speak up more then the red card is played in the Hollywood game. Andy tends to dominate the advice giving, though I think he's pretty fun too.

Brad_bb on August 16, 2004

Hope you get better soon, Jennifer. :) I always root for you when you're in a televised tournament.

ludonja on August 15, 2004

pretty and smart i would not want to play her

mike brand/mikey/brandland68 on August 7, 2004

Get well soon...2005 WSOP is waiting for you!!

PokrStudent on August 5, 2004

Wishing you a speedy recovery. Our prayers are with you.

Dr. J on August 1, 2004

I hope you get well soon Jennifer.

titanic45 on July 31, 2004

According to her bio on PSO Online, Jennifer is doing just fine after her transplant. Everything apparently went well. I'm happy for her, she's been through a lot and is a class player.

GreenMountainDragon on July 29, 2004

Does anyone know if she got her transpalnt? and how she is doing?

JasonR on July 27, 2004

From what I've read (not much only one post from another user but it seemed likely) the 1.7 million dollar pot she obtained at Bellagio was composed first of all, against Andy Beal, a Texas billionaire who plays high-stakes poker for rushes against absolute top players. They were playing 30k-60k limit by the way, so I'm not sure how many BBs it would take to get to that point but a lot clearly. Preflop Jen had KQ and Andy had K10s, there was probably a raise but they didn't mainly built the pot here of course. The flop came down A J 10 with two spades so Jen had flopped the absolute nuts and Andy flopped a monster draw hand with the nut flush draw, gutshot royal draw and straight draw, and bottom pair (ha, I would assume he ignored this). So Andy, whom I assume is recklessly aggressive due to being filty rich out of poker, built a huge pot on the flop. The turn was a blank: more raising and the river was a blank so Jennifer's hand held up. That is the story of that monstrous pot, now I will hope that her kidney transplant works out all right.

Gman on July 27, 2004

Why when discussing a woman in poker does everyone have to mention how attractive they are ? Gees, Jennifer is a classy player pure and simple. It's nice to see someone who is willing and happy to extend themselves and expand their game and play. Good luck in all your endeavours.

HackerJack on July 20, 2004

I played a limit 4/8 game against her at Ft McDowell in Phoenix a week ago and was not impressed. She gets mad when novices do the right thing and take her money - even if the pot was only $50. I did enjoy her condensending comments, though. Made me play better.

U2Beats on July 20, 2004

P.S. I never took into consideration that she is a woman while playing, as a novice, I noticed that she played just like any other person at the table. Suprised to see her at such a low limit game.

U2Beats on July 20, 2004

One of the most best & respected playes I've ever seen. Keep up the good work Jen.

Short Stack on July 17, 2004

Jen and Hon Le definitely make a great match. Jen is training to be one of the best players alive, Hon will only help in that endevour. I hear wedding bells and splashing pots in the fututre for these two love birds!!

Radiance on June 3, 2004

Jennifer is AWESOME and the BEST poker player in the WORLD!(besides me, JK)

Broncos22 on June 1, 2004

Milky on May and Real Poker Player have got it right. The issue is her poker ability, not her looks. If all you want to do is reduce women to sexual objects, go talk to your frat buddies and leave this site open to discuss poker.

Chris Fairbanks on May 25, 2004

Latest rumor has it that her and Hon Le were once an item. If those two ever had a kid...whew...what a poker god that would be!I luv Hon...Jen's cool too.

Donner on May 25, 2004

I wish she would have spoken more on how she contends with bad beats and poor play from others, which can be costly. I find as a novice player that getting drawn out by lesser players making poor plays, that the frustration level can be immense.

Kid Cardano/VegasDeLakeland on May 24, 2004

Christ, this is just like every other internet forum/messageboard. OMG LOOK ITS A WOMAN EVERYONE JUICE ALL OVER HER! Or better yet, make comments like "she's freaking ugly!" Yeah, like it matters that she's female, and it matters that she looks good. Sure, yeah!Fucking morons. She can play the game, and play it well.

Milky on May 24, 2004

There's nothing better then watching a cute little lady rule so much in what is typically seen as a mans game. I hope she wins a big one some day.

jmarlowe on May 17, 2004

Whether or not any of you losers would like to get with Jennifer has nothing to do with poker. I don't see any websites with a bunch of people discussing whether or not Doyle Brunson is 'cute'. Get a life.

realpokerplayer on May 16, 2004

she is so weak in NL it is unreal

Unregistered on April 8, 2004

Acutually she is a tough smart players who knows how to win at the table. I would dare to see her play against Hellmuth or Dolly Brunson or better yet the great Sammy Farha, that would creat some interesting poker playing!! Good luck to you Jennifer!

lady luck soucy on March 21, 2004

I guess she's a monster in ring, but her tourney game doesn't impress me much. Better than average, i guess, but limited exposure w/ seeing her cards. Cute.

pokerdali on March 6, 2004

Well seeing that I've been married 8 year and my old lady has hit the wall and the wall hit back...I won't mind being called hard up. Heck as long as the female has a heartbean and can walk she's good looking to me. hahahahaha

civil66 on March 2, 2004

Shes Kinda Cute!

Unregistered on February 23, 2004

She is one of the best looking and best talented female poker players around. I'd leave my wife for her in a heartbeat.

civil66 on February 23, 2004

meant to say most talented instead of best...she's so good looking she makes me forget my English grammar.

civil66 on February 23, 2004

Wow thats all i got to say.

zman1979 on February 19, 2004

shes great ... no question about it. if u lost the money she has u would be pissed too... jen your a great and i wish u the best of luck... I hope this woman win the wsop 2004

nicky baby on February 14, 2004

Say the word Jennifer and we will run of together to tahiti.

Hat on February 4, 2004

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