Vanessa Rousso

Poker player biography of Vanessa Rousso

A dual citizen of France and the United States, Vanessa Rousso was born in White Plains, New York, but spent much of her childhood living in Paris. At an early age, Rousso already showed signs of having above average intelligence. At age one, she was already speaking in complete sentences. She learned how to read when she was just three years old, and at the age of five, she was already playing poker. She's fluent in both English and French, and eventually learned how to communicate in Spanish as well.

After her parents divorced in 1992, Vanessa's mother (Cynthia Ferrera) moved back to the United States, bringing Vanessa along with her. They lived in Wellington, Florida, where Ferrera got a job as a high school guidance counselor and Rousso adjusted to her new environment. After finishing middle school, Rousso attended Wellington High School, where she participated in many extracurricular activities. She was part of the lacrosse and swim teams and enjoyed playing softball and basketball during her free time. Rousso was also named valedictorian and got a full scholarship to Duke University in 2001.

Vanessa Rousso's achievements as a poker player

She graduated from Duke University after just two and a half years, majoring in economics and getting a minor in political science. Although she engaged once again in many extracurricular activities, Rousso also studied game theory. This eventually led to her passion for playing various games, one of them being poker. Rousso began playing poker online at that time when she was building her resume for her law school application to the University of Miami School of Law.

At the University of Miami, Rousso continued to do excellently in her academics while still finding time for extracurricular activities and even poker games. Because she was already 21 years old at that time, she started to play in brick-and-mortar casinos. She soon made the drive to the Seminole Hard Rock Casino located in Hollywood, Florida, where she often played the No-Limit Hold'em in $65 single-table sit-and-gos. In May 2005, Rousso and her then boyfriend Ross Romash traveled to New Orleans to participate in Harrah's New Orleans Poker Challenge WSOP Circuit event. Rousso became the youngest woman ever to be part of the final table in a WSOP Circuit event.

During Rousso's first year of playing poker in casinos, she's already amassed a remarkable number of wins. These wins included her seventh place finish at the World Poker Tour championship event in 2006 and her eighth place finish in the World Series of Poker $5000 No Limit Hold 'em shorthanded event on the same year. In September 2006, she participated in the $5000 No Limit Hold'em event at the Borgata Open and won $285,450.

Poker players immediately took notice of Rousso, and she even earned a sponsorship deal with Poker Stars. She represented the site during the WPT Grand Prix de Paris and at the WSOP in 2006, where she won approximately $70,000 in tournaments.

Although she balances studying for law school, playing poker, and spending time with her fiance, Chad Brown, Rousso also engages in other activities such as running, skiing, skydiving, and boating. When she's not doing physical activities or playing poker, she enjoys playing backgammon, chess, or simply reading a good book.