WSOP Winner Donates 400k Win to Charity

Erik Brooks, Winner of the 2008 WSOP Seven Card Stud event, donated his entire $415,856 winnings to the Decision Education Foundation. Brooks had decided before the tournament to donate his winnings to the foundation. The foundation trains educators to teach students how to make intelligent life choices, along with developing classroom materials and working with youth groups.

Brooks has served on the nonprofit foundation’s board of directors since 2004.

“While it may sound fantastic to some,” Brooks explains “I believe in my lifetime children will move from math class to history to decision-making class as part of the normal curriculum in schools around the country.”

Brooks utilizes the same strategies that the foundation hopes to instill in school children, at the poker table.

“Virtually every decision I made was applying the same type of decision-making skills … you are essentially building a decision tree on the potential outcomes each time you decide whether to proceed with a hand,” he said.

Brooks, co-founder of the global financial firm Susquehanna International Group, stated the employees at his firm all take decision making courses that incorporate poker to give them “a common language.” He also adds that his personal poker philosophy underlines a key lesson for students, especially teenagers.

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