Jamie Gold was born in 1969 in Kansas City. His name was originally Jamie M. Usher and his family name was changed to Gold following his mother's divorce when she remarried at a later stage.
It is told that Jamie learned the basics of card playing from his grandfather while very young. After school, he studied for a bachelor's degree at the State University of New York at Albany. Before becoming a professional poker player, Jamie began working as a talent agent in the entertainment industry. Among his clients were Jimmy Fallon and Lucy Liu.
After participating in some smaller poker tournaments, Jamie met poker pro and WSOP champion Johnny Chan as they spent time together when working on a TV show of poker. Jamie turned his attention to No Limit Texas Hold'Em and worked on his poker skills and developed his game with the help of Johnny Chan in the form of mentor.
Jamie Gold at the World Series of Poker 2006
Jamie Gold made a name for himself in poker history when he beat more than 8,000 players to gain top spot and the big winnings in the World Series of Poker (WSOP) main event in 2006. At this No Limit Texas Hold'em event with a buy in of $10,000, Jamie earned the massive winnings of over $12 million and became the biggest winner in the history of the WSOP series.
Jamie became known for an aggressive style of play, while at the same time he was able to demonstrate a calm manner. In addition, his style of play was considered to be controversial during the WSOP series. He talked about the particular cards in his hand during the games in an attempt to bluff and to mislead other players. He also revealed a face card in his hand at the final table managing to mislead his opponent and probably persuade him to fold even though he actually had a higher hand.
Luck with the Berries
During the 2006 WSOP tournament, Jamie Gold was often seen snacking on a bowl of blueberries. Some have attributed to this to a part of his success. This is probably not due to any particular ingredient inside the berry, but rather as a form of lucky mascot, as this was something that Jamie did on the first day of the tournament and so he went on to finish in the same way.
Jamie Gold is often referred to as the "Poker Philanthropist" due to his efforts for various charities. Since his 2006 WSOP win, he has been connected with more than 40 poker charity events and is particularly dedicated to raising money for sufferers of ALS, also referred to as Lou Gehrig's disease. His father, Robert, died in late 2006 following a long struggle against ALS and Jamie remains devoted to this cause.
Today, Jamie remains within the entertainment industry and acts as the President of Production of the entertainment company Buzznation.