Former pro poker player sold tv satellites from truck with wife in 1980s. Built EchoStar Communications into satellite giant; company commands 13.7 million subscribers today. Spun off cable box manufacturer EchoStar Corp. in January; shares of TV program provider Dish Network down 25% since. Still runs both companies. Suffered setback in race for high-definition TV dominance with DirecTV after $6 million satellite failed; launched another satellite this summer. Purchased Internet TV company Sling Media for $380 million last September.