Joe Cada was born on November 18, 1987 in Shelby Charter Township, Michigan. With a mother who worked as a blackjack dealer at the Motor City Casino and a family that played cards at home, so Joe was familiar with poker before he began playing poker on the Internet. Though his first deposit failed, he soon began building his online bankroll, even playing some live poker events in Canada, where it was legal to play at 19. With his main focus being poker it meant dropping out of Macomb Community College leaving behind his academics to pursue his passion. On the other hand, this was a positive decision as he accumulated hundreds of thousands of dollars in online poker winnings.
Joe's first trip to Las Vegas for the World Series of Poker came in 2009, when the young player officially turned 21. He secured the backing of well-known pros Eric Haber and Cliff Josephy, which allowed him to play several events at the WSOP. He cashed in two tournaments, then played the $10,000 buy-in World Championship Main Event. After navigating the field of 6,494 players, he made it through to the November Nine final table in July and returned in November to play the final in front of ESPN cameras. Ultimately, he got heads-up with Darvin Moon and defeated him to win the tournament, becoming the youngest player ever to do so. The reward was $8,546,435.
The win was followed by numerous radio and television appearances, and he chose to spend some time lobbying members of Congress for the passage of pro-online gaming legislation. He continues to play poker and compete in tournaments worldwide.