Julianne Hough Beats ‘Barbie’ Director Greta Gerwig at Recent Poker Power Party

3 min read

Poker Power put the cards in the air in a New York townhouse to spread its empowerment mantra through the game of hold’em, and while she faced some of big players in the Hollywood film industry, it was Julianne Hough who wound up with all the chips.

Julianne Hough
Julianne Hough is all smiles after winning the latest PokerPoker event in New York. (Image: Jenny Just)

The former “Dancing With the Stars” dancer and judge and current actress joined some very successful women to play a small for-fun poker tourney at NYU business professor and author Suzy Welch’s home.

The game included director Greta Gerwig, who just landed a humongous hit with the “Barbie” movie, actress America Ferrera (who plays Gloria in “Barbie”), Desiree Gruber, CEO and founder of the production company Full Picture (“Project Runway”), and fashionista Rebecca Minkoff.

Co-founder Jenny Just gave these power-players a taste of the game to espouse the goals of her and her daughter, co-founder Juliette Hulsizer’s, brand and organization.

Their mission: “To empower women+ to build new life skills over a thrilling game of cards so that they can play life differently – at work, at home, and everywhere in between.”

Empowerment through poker

Removing men from their poker laboratory is an important part of giving Poker Power members the ability to learn the game in a stress-free laboratory.

Just and her team have built a community of women poker players through her website, its “Read ’em and Reap” newsletter, and an app, where users can take lessons, practice, connect with others, and sharpen their skills. They also often have live events filled with women from the upper-crust of the business and entertainment worlds, but have yet to have an event opened to the public.

Just and Poker Power got some serious Internet airtime as the subject of a Time magazine feature in July called “This Female Billionaire Thinks the Secret to Women’s Wealth Is Poker.”

A mathematical genius who is a finance world crusher, she believes that poker offers many lessons that translate into the the business world, which is dominated by men.

“By creating a safe space for female-identifying and non-binary individuals to learn the essential skills endemic to poker and business – skills like negotiation, risk-taking, and capital allocation – poker power is taking a unique and scalable approach to closing the gender wealth and equity gaps,” Just told People magazine.

Poker Power promises to teach women how to take the skills that poker players would be wise to master — risk assessment, confidence, negotiation, discipline, reading people, and decision making — and incorporate them in their careers.

“We want to teach one million (women) how to negotiate, assess risk, and make decisions with confidence—from the classroom to the board room and at every seat in between,” Just said.

More information can be found on Poker Power’s website.

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