Marriott Madison West, Middleton
Well, what a difference a year makes! A year ago at this meeting I mentioned that it did not appear that the USCF would entertain the idea of a Wisconsin US Open until at least 2017 or 2018. Shortly thereafter I received a phone call from Pat Smith, the USCF’s National Event Director, who informed me that she was driving from Nashville to Minneapolis to do site inspections for upcoming national scholastic events. I immediately said that that would put her in Madison around dinner time and that we should meet at the Marriott for dinner and a quick tour. She agreed. We had a lovely dinner with the Marriott’s Sales Manager and our representative with the Greater Madison Convention and Visitor’s Bureau. Pat was impressed enough to recommend the site to USCF Executive Director Bill Hall. Another site had fallen through for 2013 and the Marriott was still holding the dates for us. After a couple of weeks of negotiation on the contract, Bill and Pat called me on October 4th to tell me that Bill had signed a contract for the 2013 US Open!
The 2013 US Open will be the first in Wisconsin since 1953. (The first was in 1935.) The 2012 US Open in Vancouver, WA was the first US Open in the Pacific Northwest since 1987. The players from Washington and Oregon came out in full force! At 514 players it was the largest US Open since 2006 when it was in Chicago. Everyone loved the site and with the turnout, the USCF is thinking about a return to the area much sooner than 25 years. Hint! Hint!
My challenge to you is to help me generate the interest in your club and in your city so that our state’s players turn out for this event! In 2006 when the National High School Championships were in Milwaukee, over 300 Wisconsin youth turned out for the event. Now is the time for the Wisconsin adults and youth alike to show their support! Round one of the traditional (one game a day) schedule begins Saturday, July 27. The six day schedule starts Tuesday, July 30. The four day schedule starts Thursday, August 1. Make plans now to play in the 2013 US Open in Middleton, Wisconsin!
Our juniors continue to astound! Congratulations to Madison’s Awonder Liang who last November in Brazil won the Under 8 open division of the World Youth and with it, an FM title. Congratulations to Kenosha’s Anupama Rajendra for winning the under 18 section of the 2012 Kasparov Chess Foundation’s All-Girl’s National Championships. Joining Awonder and Anupama in qualifying for the 2012 World Youth is Appleton’s Rachel Ulrich who qualified by rating. The 2012 World Youth is in Slovenia in November. We wish them the best of luck and if anyone wishes to donate to defray their expenses, please contact the families.
The USCF had another very good year financially. We finished ahead about $250,000. Membership actually rose after the dues increase on January 1. Fiscal year 2013 will be a bit more of a challenge with the Olympiad that is currently under way. Hopefully we can have a small profit for 2013 but breaking even would be a good year.
The cutoff date for a rating supplement has moved from the first Friday of the previous month to the third Friday of the previous month. With this change, your rating will no longer be printed on the magazine label. If you haven’t checked out the Member Services Area (MSA) of www.uschess.org, your rating and rating history is displayed for all events back to 1991 and as time allows earlier tournaments will be added.
The USCF has filed an application with the IRS to make it a 501(c)3 organization. The IRS response should be coming within a year. The delegates also voted to make the Executive Board the Board of Directors of the USCF. Previously the Board of Delegates was the Board of Directors of the USCF but with around 150 delegates, it proved difficult in getting states to nominate their delegates and then for the delegates to accept their nominations. Being a member of the Board of Directors of a corporation also includes legal responsibilities that some delegates may not have been aware of. One issue the IRS would have with our current structure is that the separate Life Member’s Asset Committee has the ability to bind the Federation by a group other than the Board of Directors with the trading of securities. To get around this requirement, the Delegate’s voted to create a Life Member’s Asset Trust whose directors will be appointed by the delegates.
In other USCF matters, they will be creating a blitz rating system so your local blitz events could be rated. USCF online play should be functional soon. There is a beta version available now in the form of a correspondence server. The Delegates also voted to create a K-12 Girls Invitational Tournament at the US Open similar in format to the Denker and Barber tournaments. These are another reason to play in the Traditional schedule of the US Open as these invitational events get started on the first Saturday and you may watch them.
The WCA had a good year. Our financial position continues to be strong gaining about $700 last year.
Once again we are pleased to see a large number of events on our fall calendar but there is still a lack of events in the spring and summer. Organizers need to consider spreading out their events more. We’re all competing for the same entry fee dollars. Spacing events out will encourage play and draw more entrants overall.
Following this meeting, in our next WCA Board of Director’s meeting we’ll be electing our two delegates for next year’s national meetings which will be held in Middleton in July and August.
The WCA sponsors the Marshall Rohland Memorial/Wisconsin Closed Championship, the Arpad Elo Open, the William Martz Memorial/North Central Open, the Wisconsin Memorial and the Junior Open and Veterans Tournaments. All are open for bids from state organizers and/or tournament directors. If you are interested in more details on how to bid for these events, please contact any board member.
Congratulations to Whitefish Bay High School for their first team title at the State Scholastic Championships. Congratulations to Brookfield’s Wisconsin Hills Middle School for capturing their first K-8 State Team Championship and to Madison’s Glenn Stephens Elementary School for capturing their first K-5 State Team Championship title. Last March 470 Wisconsin students participated in the State Scholastic Championships at UW-Oshkosh.
The 2012 Arnold Denker Tournament of High School Champions was held in conjunction with the US Open in Vancouver, WA. Our representative was Thomas Ulrich of Appleton. He finished 3-2-1 in a highly competitive event. In the Dewain Barber Tournament of K-8 State Champions, our representative, Tinglin Shi , also finished 3-2-1 and that included wins over an expert in round one and two 1900’s.
Congratulations to Aaron Jing for capturing the 2011 Wisconsin Chess Tour title. Organizers desiring to have their event considered for Tour status need to contact Tour Committee Chair Guy Hoffman by November of the year before the tour. Tour standings are listed on our newly refreshed website www.wischess.org.
The terms of office of Ken Rasmussen, Robin Grochowski and Matt Conant expire today. I want to thank all of the Board members for their hard work and dedication this past year.