Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Ten Minutes With Greg Jensen

A poker-playing hedge fund manager



Greg Jensen

Greg Jensen is CEO and co-CIO of Bridgewater Associates, a $130-billion investment fund, based in Westport. In January, the amateur poker player entered a PokerStars Super High Roller tournament, with 59 entries, a $5.7-million pool, and some of the top pro players in the world. Jensen made the final table, finishing sixth and earning $286,200, which he summarily donated to a group supporting families in Newtown. He lives in Ridgefield with wife Valerie and their children. 

Were you nervous?  I wouldn’t say nervous. Winning and surviving in a poker tournament, like most things, requires a mix of appropriate aggression and fear. You need to be aggressive enough to crush your opponent and wary enough to avoid being crushed.

You were pretty, well, poker-faced, while the others were pretty chatty. Was that your strategy?  The other guys at the table play more poker in a couple of weeks than I have played in this decade.  So they are comfortable in most circumstances. I needed more focus to have a feel for what was going on. They also gain info by knowing how to talk to people during the hand, and I was better off staying away from that.

What is it about these pros that make them better than your Ridgefield poker friends?  The pros drink water instead of beer, and they have an incredible ability to concentrate and consider multiple possibilities naturally. 

How well can you read what cards others likely have?  It depends who I am reading. Most of card reading is about understanding betting patterns and being able to probabilistically determine what the range of cards they might have is. I am decent at that, but some of the pros are almost magical at it.

Where is there more pressure—managing an investment fund or sitting at a final poker table?  Poker is great fun and teaches a lot of valuable life lessons, but it is nowhere near as broad an experience as trying to make sense of the world and systemize that understanding as I do at Bridgewater. At Bridgewater, there are many more people helping me see my mistakes before I make them. I could have used that at the poker table.

Do you have lucky socks or anything that you wear to something like this?  I can’t give all of my secrets away.  

Did you develop any poker groupies?  Val beat all the groupies off of me with a stick. I had to do the same for her as she finished third in the women’s tournament later in the week

Lots of high-fives from colleagues back at work?  Everyone was very intrigued, and naturally I got a fair dose of feedback on my mistakes.

Why did you decide to give it all to Newtown?  Like all parents, Val and I were devastated by the shooting and pictured what it would be like if those were our kids. Val started brainstorming on what would be an appropriate and beautiful gesture of support to Newtown, and she has a great gift planned. 

 

 

Connect With Us

         

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Catch the Vibe Newsletter

Weekend activities and events in the area
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Archive »Related Content

EXCLUSIVE Wearable Ridgefield

Hand-stitched needlepoint belt featuring the Cass Gilbert Fountain

EXCLUSIVE Ridgefield Icon

Finely crafted needlepoint cushion adds a splash to any decor

Knock, Knock

HGTV stars, the property brothers, pop into klaffs

Dedicated Rock Star Donates Her Salary to the Arts!

Allison Stockel, Executive Director of The Ridgefield Playhouse, gives back in so many ways

Old Times and New Times

Beau Gravitte brings the Actors Studio to town

Profiles

Your Guides to Leading Local Professionals

Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags

Edit ModuleShow Tags

September 2016

Friday, September 23 through Sunday, September 25 Awesome Autumn Book Sale Fundraiser, Friday 12 – 6 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sunday 1 – 5 p.m.* Everyone is covered in this fundraiser...

Cost: free

Where:
Wilton Library
137 Old Ridgefield Road
Wilton, CT  06897
View map »


Sponsor: Wilton Library
Telephone: 203-762-3950
Website »

More information

Step inside the Ogden House to experience life in 18th century Fairfield. David and Jane Sturges Ogden began their marriage here, settling into farm life and establishing a family legacy that...

Cost: $5, $3 Students & Seniors; Free for members

Where:
Fairfield Museum and History Center
370 Beach Road
Fairfield, CT  06824
View map »


Sponsor: Fairfield Museum and History Center
Telephone: 203-259-1598
Contact Name: Visitor Services Manager
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Destiny/fate is the theme of the new fall exhibit “Kismet” at The City of Norwalk Parking Authority’s Maritime Garage Gallery.  “Kismet” runs now through December...

Cost: Free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 120-383-19063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

Learn how to take your humor to the stage! Have you been told you’re funny?  Do you steal the show at parties?  Are you asked by your family and co-workers to “tell the story about...

Cost: $300

Where:
The Ridgefield Playhouse
80 East Ridge Road
Ridgefield, CT  06877
View map »


Sponsor: The Ridgefield Playhouse
Telephone: 203-438-5795
Contact Name: Paloma Hutton
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Destiny/fate is the theme of the new fall exhibit “Kismet” at The City of Norwalk Parking Authority’s Maritime Garage Gallery.  “Kismet” runs now through December...

Cost: Free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 120-383-19063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

DeCicco & Sons, 17 Maple Avenue, Armonk (Demonstration Kitchen-2nd floor), 914-499-1100, www.deciccoandsons.comHelp Prep and Beer Education! As a family owned and operated specialty grocery store...

Cost: $15 plus $25 Food Fee

Where:
DeCicco & Sons
17 Maple Avenue
ARMONK, NY
View map »


Sponsor: WCC
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Destiny/fate is the theme of the new fall exhibit “Kismet” at The City of Norwalk Parking Authority’s Maritime Garage Gallery.  “Kismet” runs now through December...

Cost: Free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 120-383-19063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Help raise funds to sponsor a puppy at the L’Armoire cocktail party fundraiser for Puppies Behind Bars on Thursday, September 29th between 5.30-7.30pm.  Providing delicious...

Cost: FREE

Where:
L'Armoire
102 Park Street
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

Thursday, September 29 Yellow Dress Performance, 7 – 8:30 p.m. The Yellow Dress is a dramatic one-woman play based on the stories of young women who were victims of dating violence. The...

Cost: free

Where:
Wilton Library
137 Old Ridgefield Road
Wilton, CT  06897
View map »


Sponsor: Wilton Library
Telephone: 203-762-3950
Website »

More information

Legendary comedian D.L. Hughley is one of the most popular and highly recognized standup comedians on the road today. He’s been on the New York airwaves, as host of the morning show on...

Cost: $75

Where:
Ridgefield Playhouse
80 East Ridge Rd
Ridgefield, CT  06877
View map »


Website »

More information

Destiny/fate is the theme of the new fall exhibit “Kismet” at The City of Norwalk Parking Authority’s Maritime Garage Gallery.  “Kismet” runs now through December...

Cost: Free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 120-383-19063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Destiny/fate is the theme of the new fall exhibit “Kismet” at The City of Norwalk Parking Authority’s Maritime Garage Gallery.  “Kismet” runs now through December...

Cost: Free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 120-383-19063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Join Guideposts for a spirit-lifting experience to learn new ways to strengthen your faith in tough times. Our inspiring speakers will provide you  with practical, faith-filled advice to...

Cost: $10

Where:
Matrix Conference & Banquet Center
39 Old Ridgebury Rd
Danbury, CT  06810
View map »


Telephone: 203-749-0404
Website »

More information

For Pete’s sake, don’t miss ‘Pete the Cat’ LIVE on the Playhouse stage!  When Pete the Cat gets caught rocking out after bedtime, the cat-catcher sends him to live with the Biddle family...

Cost: $15

Where:
Ridgefield Playhouse
10 E Ridge Road
Ridgefield, CT  06877
View map »


Sponsor: Paloma Hutton
Telephone: 203-438-5795
Contact Name: Paloma Hutton
Website »

More information

For Pete’s sake, don’t miss ‘Pete the Cat’ LIVE on the Playhouse stage!  When Pete the Cat gets caught rocking out after bedtime, the cat-catcher sends him to live with the Biddle family...

Cost: $15

Where:
Ridgefield Playhouse
10 E Ridge Road
Ridgefield, CT  06877
View map »


Sponsor: Paloma Hutton
Telephone: 203-438-5795
Contact Name: Paloma Hutton
Website »

More information

he New Canaan Nature Center's 5th Harvest Festival takes place on Saturday, October 1st from 7-10pm. Enjoy the social evening in the meadow, under illuminated tents...

Cost: $75 in advance

Where:
New Canaan Nature Center
144 Oenoke Ridge, New Canaan
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

Music on the Hill presents a new work by artistic director Ellen Dickinson. "Threads of Light: A Tapestry of African-American Spirituals" weaves together 30 spirituals in three movements...

Cost: free

Where:
Norwalk Concert Hall
125 East Avenue
Norwalk, CT  06851
View map »


Sponsor: Music on the Hill
Telephone: 203-529-3133
Contact Name: Music on the Hill
Website »

More information

Ridgefield Symphony Orchestra A World of Possibilities Barbara Yahr, Conductor       Brahms – Hungarian Dance No. Bruch – Violin Concerto No....

Cost: Tickets: $25, $45 & $60 - Senior & Student Discounts Available.

Where:
Ridgefield High School Auditorium
700 North Salem Road
Ridgefield, CT  06877
View map »


Sponsor: Ridgefield Symphony Orchestra
Telephone: 203-438-3889
Contact Name: Laurie Kenagy
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags