Margie Heintz – Class of 2011
Credited with being the first woman to ever deal at the World Series of Poker, Margie Heintz has had a long and storied career in the poker industry dating to the early 1970s. Heintz was originally from Montana, a fact that would benefit her later in life, where she played and dealt poker in Billings. A year later, she relocated to Las Vegas and secured a position dealing at the Golden Nugget.
So how did Heintz earn the distinction as the first woman dealer at the WSOP? When the El Dorado Casino learned of Heintz’s nomination, they wrote a press release on their employee that told the tale.
“In 1977, famous rodeo cowboy and poker player Byron “Cowboy” Wolford suggested Heintz deal at the upcoming World Series of Poker at Binion’s Gambling Hall. When she went to inquire, she was told no woman had ever dealt the tournament or had even applied to deal before, so she went to talk to owner Benny Binion. The two hit it off immediately when she mentioned her Montana roots, and she was hired.
“Though many men playing in the 1977 World Series didn’t think she was capable, Heintz took the reins and ended up so highly recommended that she was invited to deal the final table. In front of a national audience covered by the CBS Wide World of Sports, Heintz dealt the championship round of the tournament, opening the door for women in the poker industry across the nation.”
Heintz currently serves as Director of Poker Operations at Reno’s El Dorado Casino.