Pi Kappa Phi member inducted into Poker Hall of Fame

Pi Kappa Phi member Chris Moneymaker was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame on July 15, celebrating his accomplishments and his contributions to the rising popularity of professional poker.

Moneymaker, initiated into the Alpha Sigma Chapter at Tennessee, made professional poker history in 2003 by becoming the first player to ever win a world championship after qualifying from an online poker site. Moneymaker, an accountant at the time, won $2.5 million for his first place finish after qualifying through a $86 satellite tournament through PokerStars.

“I’m very honored… very happy,” Moneymaker said in a World Series of Poker statement. “It’s great for my kids — it’ll be  a cool thing for them to see when they grow up.

Moneymaker’s success propelled him from amateur to professional almost instantaneously, and he is accredited with online poker’s rapid growth, known as “The Moneymaker Effect,” through which player pools doubled year after year from 2003 to 2006.