2023 WCA President's Report

  • Written by Mike Nietman
  • Published: 06 April 2023
  • Last Updated: 06 April 2023

2023 WCA President’s Report

April 1, 2023

I’m pleased to announce that US Chess has signed a contract with the Madison Marriott West to host the 2025 US Open! It will be the third US Open at the property (2013 and 2018) and fifth in Wisconsin (1935 and 1953). The dates are July 28 – August 3. The first thing to note is that that is only seven days. The 2025 event will be the first of the new seven-day format US Opens. There will still be nine rounds with the Traditional schedule doubling up rounds on two of the first three days. Shorter schedules such as a four day and most likely a five or six-day schedule will also be available. All schedules merge Friday evening in round seven.

For those that recall the problem we had in 2018 when the CrossFit games took all of the hotel rooms in town (or jacked up their rates to $400) I’ve been told that they were moving the games to Alabama in 2024 but they’ve since signed with Madison again for 2024. To combat a possible extension to 2025, US Chess has booked the entire Marriott and has two overflow hotels are also under contract. Hopefully there won’t be a room problem.

While still not back to full strength on our tournament offerings post-pandemic, we’re getting closer and I’m happy to see new organizers and organizations popping up. That said we have a problem with numerous adjacent weekend events that are making our players select which events they go to instead of possibly participating in multiple events. Organizers need to work together in setting dates for their events. The way to do that is to contact our tournament clearinghouse (an official US Chess post) who happens to be Guy Hoffman at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. He will let you know what other organizers are planning and let you know if your dates have already been taken. I suggest not signing contracts until you get with Guy.

Speaking of signing contracts, hotels seem to want to make up for a couple of years of lost revenue during the pandemic by jacking up their rates for our playing rooms. Even Gruenhagen Conference Center at UW-Oshkosh is raising their meeting room rates. Organizers need to ask for off weekends if they want to get an affordable hotel deal. If we can get into a property, expect higher entry fees. We need to start thinking outside of the box for new sites. If you have any suggestions for venues, please contact a Board member.

Tournament organizers are able to add calendar entries to our website calendar and we encourage them to do so. It is free advertising for their events. After submission, you may need to e-mail me so that I can approve the event.

WCA’s financials continue to be on strong ground.

Andy Becker, Randy Bubolz and Sandy Hoffman have terms as WCA Board members expire March 31, 2023. All three were re-nominated along with Neil Hogg and Andy Schley. Randy opted not to run. An election took place of all Wisconsin players above age 16 who played in a WCA event in 2022. Andy Becker, Andy Schley and Neil Hogg were elected to three-year terms starting April 1. My thanks to Randy and Sandy for their dedicated service to Wisconsin chess.

We have not had a reorganizational meeting to determine 2023 officers as of yet.

The WCA sponsors the Marshall Rohland Memorial/Wisconsin Closed Championship, the Arpad Elo Open, the William Martz Memorial/North Central Open, the Wisconsin Memorial, the Game/60 State Championship, the Rapid and Blitz State Championships and the Wisconsin 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.

The 2023 State Scholastic Championships was held in March in Oshkosh under the new organization of Chris Wainscott and Alex Betaneli. They had over 500 attend! Congratulations to New Berlin Eisenhower High School for winning their first state championship! The Eagle School of Madison won their first K-8 state championship and the Milwaukee German Immersion School defended their K-5 state championship.

Since the State Scholastic is a team Swiss event at the high school level, Wisconsin uses the Wisconsin Junior Open as its qualifier for the national state invitational events. Please plan to participate in the event November 4-5 at UW-Oshkosh to qualify for the 2024 GM Arnold Denker National Tournament of High School State Champions, the Dewain Barber National Tournament of Middle School State Champions, the John D. Rockefeller III National Tournament of Elementary School State Champions and the WIM Ruth Haring National Tournament of Girls State Champions which will be held in conjunction with the US Open in Norfolk, VA. In 2023 these events will be held in Grand Rapids, MI. Our representatives will be Hersh Singh (Denker), Ethan Liang (Barber), Ojas Sahoo (Rockefeller) and either Simran Bhatia or Aradh Kaur (Haring) who have yet to complete a playoff this spring. Good luck team!

With the same format as the Denker, Barber, Rockefeller and Haring is the John T. Irwin National Tournament of Senior State Champions. We use the Veterans Tournament held in conjunction with the Wisconsin Junior Open in November to select our representative. Bryan Lilly will be our 2023 rep having won a playoff with Senthil Sundaram.

Of special note is that in 2025 the National State Invitationals will expand to include the GM Maurice Ashley National Tournament of K-3 State Champions and the Paul Morphy National Tournament of K-1 State Champions. We’ll need to figure out how to select those players plus name alternates for all of the invitationals.

Congratulations to Dan Phipps for capturing the 2022 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 website www.wischess.org.

Speaking of the state website, I’ve received permission from Badger Chess editor Bill Williams to re-publish interviews he and his contributors printed in the magazine. If you go to the home page now, there is an excellent interview with Arpad Elo from 1982. Over the rest of the year, I’ll post additional interviews with the likes of Bill Martz, Fred Cramer, Tom Moore and a second one with Arpad Elo. I hope you enjoy the content.

Several years ago, Mark Seghers put together a BlogSpot website for the State Scholastic tournament. Back in the 1980’s I was able to find all of the winners going back to the tournament’s inception in 1970 (except for 1981) for inclusion on the travelling trophy. Now I’m trying to locate either standings or full crosstables for the events and have Mark post them. I’ve been able to find at least standings for all of them except nine. If you have any of the missing crosstables or even full crosstables for ones that we’ve posted just standings, please let me know. The website is Wisconsin State Scholastic Chess Championship (wischolasticchesschampionship.blogspot.com).

While doing this research I’ve also been interested in collecting the names of the winners of the Wisconsin Junior Open which started in 1972. I’m currently missing 1972-1976, 1978, 1984 and 1988. According to a note I found, there was no event in 1977 and 1979-1982. I’ll post what I have at this year’s Junior Open.

And more for the history buffs… Milwaukeean Mike Wierzbicki has penned a manuscript of chess in Milwaukee in the mid-1900’s. He has submitted it to the Wisconsin Historical Society Press for publication and is awaiting their decision. Once it is published, I’ll let you know where it can be obtained.

Hope to see you at a tournament or club soon!

Respectfully submitted by WCA President, Mike Nietman This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

2022 WCA President's Report

  • Written by Mike Nietman
  • Published: 02 April 2022
  • Last Updated: 06 April 2023

2022 WCA President’s Report

April 1, 2022

Although not at full strength yet, I’m happy to report that over-the-board tournaments are slowly coming back! Proving the need for events, two recent one day events drew over 100 participants each. One problem that tournament organizers are experiencing are greatly increased site costs. Whether it be hotels trying to recoup lost revenue during the pandemic or an increase in the number of weddings that were delayed due to the pandemic now vying for space with us, hotels are getting more expensive for chess tournaments. And more expensive hotels mean higher entry fees, reduced prize funds or both. If you have any suggestions for venues, please contact a Board member.

With minimal activity in the past year, WCA’s financials remain on strong ground.

Likewise, US Chess is running national events and doing very well financially.

Guy Hoffman, James Coons and myself have terms as Board members expire in 2022. All three were re-nominated and accepted nomination. With only three nominees all are re-elected to the Board for three year terms. We thank two others who were nominated, both former WCA Presidents, but each declined nomination.

Read more: 2022 WCA President's Report

2021 WCA President's Report

  • Written by Mike Nietman
  • Published: 04 April 2021
  • Last Updated: 11 March 2023

2021 WCA President’s Report

April 1, 2021

Ugh. What a year!? The pandemic has cancelled every in person event since February, 2020. Hopefully the end is near and we get back to doing what we all want to do – play over-the-board club and tournament chess!

Online chess has thrived but some just don’t trust that option. Others have devoted time to studying the game. It’ll be interesting to watch ratings once we start up again.

In the meantime, the Netflix series The Queen’s Gambit has opened the door to chess participation like nothing else since the Fischer boom of the 1970’s. Hopefully our clubs can open soon to bring in and develop that new found crowd.

I am saddened to report the recent passing of Mike Selig, founder of the NorthEastern Open Chess Championships and organizer and director of numerous other events around the state. He ran the Appleton Chess Club for decades. Mike was my main mentor in organizing events and deeded me the NorthEastern Open a few years ago to continue the legacy. I’m proud to announce the new name of the event as the Mike Selig Memorial/NorthEastern Open Chess Championships.

Read more: 2021 WCA President's Report

Sep - Dec 1971

  • Written by Pete Webster
  • Published: 10 December 2020
  • Last Updated: 11 December 2020

Volume 3 #3-4

This was a double issue which opened with the editor's apology for how life conspired against him getting the issue out at all. Things had cleared up for Pete, and with this issue he announced a third year of Joyous Chess would, in fact, occur.

He added an apology for errors in v2#2: He'd flipped the names of the players in Webster-Martz, and he'd omitted the light notes that Richard Kujoth had supplied for the game Annen-Kujoth (there were 4 in all).

This was followed by announcements for the 1972 State Championship in Stevens Point and the 1972 High School Team Championship, run by Mr. Baird at Boys' Tech HS in Milwaukee, as well as a tournament ("sometime in May?") at UW-Madison and the Duluth Open at UM-D.

Other notes from this issue are reproduced below.

Read more: Sep - Dec 1971

Proposed WCA Bylaws Changes

  • Written by Mike Nietman
  • Published: 09 June 2013
  • Last Updated: 09 June 2013

Bylaws Changes to be Voted on At Annual Membership Meeting


At the Annual Membership Meeting being held on Sunday, September 1, 2013 at 3:30 PM in Neenah Wisconsin there will be a vote by the Wisconsin Chess Association (WCA) members to change the WCA Bylaws.  The details of the changes are posted on this site.


The biggest change is to have the Annual Meeting completed electronically (email) via the internet.  This would be completed during a three month time frame (January thru March) using a web site data base that will be maintained by a Data Based Coordinator assigned by the WCA Board of Directors.  The results of any elections, the President’s and Treasurer’s report will also be sent out electronically. 


The idea behind this change is to better communicate with WCA Members and to have greater participation by the Members.  You are a voting member if you at least 16 years old and have played in any WCA Tournament in the previous year.  You can also become a member by paying a $5 annual fee.  The current format has had the Annual Meeting at the Wisconsin Closed Tournament.  The attendance has been poor, and only the individuals at the tournament could vote.  WCA would really like greater participation in voting for new board members and feedback on any issues related to Wisconsin chess.  Another advantage to the change would be more time for chess at the Wisconsin Closed Championship either going to a seven round format or having other chess activities.


If at all possible please plan on attending the Annual Meeting this year to give us your opinion and vote on the proposed Bylaws change.

Wisconsin Chess Association

Bylaws Changes


Totally Replaces Section 6


6.         Meetings

6.1       Definitions:

            Annual Meeting:  The three month process described in this section.  References

to the Annual Meeting in other sections of the Bylaws is referring to the process in this section.

Audit Team:  Two individuals that will be appointed by the Wisconsin Chess Association (WCA) Board of Directors (BOD) on an annual basis to review the results of the voting members as accumulated by the Main Contact. 

Main Contact:  The individual appointed by the WCA BOD to send out and receive emails from the voting members.  The Main Contact will also tabulate the results of all votes and report all information to the Audit Team.

Member Data Base:  The data base with the Voting Members email addresses will be maintained by Data Base Coordinator.  The data base will be used by the Main Contact on the initial email sent out to the Voting Members.  All registration forms for WCA tournaments will have a line for the players email so the Member Data Base can be updated on an ongoing basis.

Voting Member:  A WCA member in the previous calendar year and over the age of sixteen.  An individual is a member by playing in a WCA tournament or paying the membership fee. 

6.2       During the first week of January the Main Contact using the Member Data base will send to the Voting Members the initial email.  The deadline for a response from the Voting Members will be the end of January.  The initial email will include: 

            -  The announcement of Board of Directors members whose terms will expire

            -  Request for nominations to serve on the WCA Board of Directors

            -  Request for any bylaw changes

            -  Request for any suggestions or comments

            -  The announcement of changes in the membership fees to be effective April 1

            -  Nominees for Honorary Life Membership

            -  If a survey is ready it would be sent at this time

6.3       From February 1 to February 15 the following will occur:

-  The Main Contact will review all responses. 

-  All BOD nominees will be contacted to see if they want to serve

-  The ballot will be prepared for the vote on Board of Directors

-  The current BOD will review and vote on any Bylaw changes

-  The Bylaw changes will be prepared for a vote by the Voting Members

-  The current BOD will review and vote on any Honorary Life Memberships

-  Honorary Life Memberships will be prepared for a vote by the Voting Members

6.4       On February 16 using the Member Data Base the Main Contact will send to the Voting Members the ballot for the WCA Board of Directors, the Bylaws changes referendum, and Honorary Life Memberships ballot.  The Voting Members have until March 15 to send their vote to the Main Contact.

6.5       March 15 to March 31 the Main Contact will accumulate the votes and review the results with the Audit Team.  The final results will be reported to the WCA BOD.

6.6       April 1 the annual report to the Voting Members will be sent via email by the Main Contact and will include:

            -  The results of the Board of Directors vote

            -  The results of the Bylaws changes vote

            -  The results of the Honorary Life Memberships vote

            -  The Presidents report

            -  The Treasurer’s report

6.7       The newly elected Board of Directors term starts April 1.  The BOD will have three regular meetings. Between regular meetings the BOD may conduct business by mail, telephone or email.  A special meeting of the BOD maybe called by the President or upon written request of three Board Members.  Five Board Members must be present for a quorum for any meeting. 

6.8       A special meeting of the membership, following thirty day notice, shall be called upon a majority vote of the Board or upon written request by ten members.

6.9       The Board Members as of September 1, 2013 will have their terms shortened by five months.      


For the following added changes are in BOLD deleted changes have a strike through line.


Changes to 3.2

A change in the amount of dues shall be announced thirty days after the meeting.


Changes to 3.3

Honorary Life membership maybe conferred by a three-fourths vote of the Voting Members present at an the annual meeting upon a person who has rendered notable service to the Association.


Totally replace 4.2

The newly elected Board of Directors shall elect Officers for the Association within one week after the Annual Meeting via a meeting or through email.  The new Officers will be announced to the WCA members via email.


Changes to 5.1

The officers of the Association are a President, a Vice President, a Secretary, and a Treasurer, who are elected by the Board, and such committee chairmen as the President may appoint.  The Board, at its option, may elect one person to serve as both Secretary and Treasurer two officer positions, with the exception of holding both the President and Vice President positions. 


Add 5.6

The Board of Directors will appoint an individual to service as the Data Base Coordinator who will maintain the Member Data Base as defined in section 6.1.


Changes to 8.3

OFFICE ADDRESS:  The principal office address of the Association shall be in care of the secretary the President’s address.




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