Joe Hachem cleans up at the 2005 World Series of Poker

Joe Hachem cleans up at the 2005 World Series of Poker

Born in Lebanon in 1966 and moving to Australia with his family in 1972, Joe Hachem is renowned for winning the 2005 World Series of Poker (WSOP) main event, earning him a whopping US$7.5 million, the biggest first prize in poker history.

Once he became 2005 WSOP champion, Hachem embarked on a thrilling journey in the poker world he never imagined.

Currently residing in Melbourne, Australia, life in the land Down Under has taught Hachem one simple lesson: nothing is more important than family. Hachem has been married for more than 16 years and is father to four children. He vouches that loving and supporting them has always been and will always be his main objective.

To that end, Hachem spent 13 years in a successful chiropractic practice. After the turn of the millennium, however, he developed a rare medical condition that prevented him from doing his job. Unable to continue in hisregular profession, Hachem became a mortgage broker and started looking more closely at poker, until what was once a hobby quickly became a passion. 

Pokerwas a game Hachem had been playing for most of his adult life. In the mid-1990s, he started to look at the cards more seriously. Once his condition took away hisability to do chiropractic work, Hachem started to consider himself a semi-professional poker player, playing live in Melbourne and online at PokerStars.

Like any poker player, Hachem had harboured dreams of making it to the WSOP, and figured they would remain just that – dreams. He couldn’t justify leaving his family for so long, to go so far away. Ultimately, Hachem found a way to make it happen. Early in the 2005 WSOP, he played a small event, placed tenth, and pocketed $28,000. With the money in hispocket and a newfound confidence, he peeled off $10,000 and bought into the 2005 WSOP main event.

Seven days later, every poker dream Hachem ever had became a reality. He had defeated the biggest poker field in history and won the biggest first prize in poker history, becoming a WSOP champion.

Now, Hachem travels the world in search of the biggest poker tournaments, ensuring he keeps true to the most important thing in his life: his family.