Daniel Porush was a Junior Partner and later head of Stratton Oakmont. While at Stratton Oakmont, Porush’s behavior was described as “giving new meaning to the term abnormal”. He was a childhood friend of Steve Madden, founder of Steve Madden Shoes.
Infamously remembered for his crazy antics, Porush was undoubtedly the ringleader behind Stratton Oakmont’s bizarre culture. He is known to have hosted a midget throwing contest in the office to build company moral but is most remembered for swallowing an employee’s pet goldfish to punish the broker for being unproductive.
On international business trips with Jordan Belfort, Porush is reported to have commonly smuggled drugs across international borders by hiding the substances up his anus. Additionally, in yet another example of unapologetic shady choices, he is said to have married his first cousin simply because she was, “a real piece of ass".
Before Stratton Oakmont, Porush worked as a trainee stockbroker under Jordan Belfort. When Belfort founded Stratton Oakmont, Porush took the opportunity to buy-in as a junior partner. Throughout the years, he ruthlessly steamrolled anyone in his way in order to secure his position as Belfort’s number two. His relationship with Belfort paved the way for his promotion to head of Stratton Oakmont after Belfort’s retirement from the securities industry. This position, however, did not last long as Porush made a series of poor leadership decisions including refusing a court request to install phone taps on his brokers. Porush was eventually forced to close Stratton Oakmont or face jail time for contempt of court.
In 1999, Porush was sentenced to 39 months in prison after pleading guilty to ten counts of money laundering and securities fraud. He was released in 2004 and currently works as the director of a medical supplies company called Christian Diabetics.