Maca Board Meeting Minutes


Kennedy Senior Center, Natick, Mass

Minutes Prepared by Mark Kaprielian, Clerk

Scheduled:   7:30 PM

Opened:   7:50 PM

Closed: 10:37 PM


Board Members




Guests Present


Harvey Reed




Ken Belt


Steve Frymer






Bob Messenger






Mark Kaprielian






Harvey Burger






Stephen Dann






Frank Del Bonis






Larry Eldridge






Tony Gavelis






Gus Gosselin






Bill Kelleher






Robert King






Peter Lee






Tim Oliveri






Maryann Reilly

















   Note:  All vote tallies are shown as   For – Against – Abstention, e.g.  5 – 2 – 1

President’s Report – Harvey Reed

Duration: 3 minutes 7:50 – 7:53

The President welcomed new board members and outline the general process by which the board generally runs meetings.   He stated that we have about three months to do our planning for the beginning of the scholastic season as well as our planning and budgeting.


Duration: 3 minutes 7:53 – 7:56


            xx, yy 2nd

To approve the Draft 1 minutes of 04-09-02 meeting with the correction of the minutes date, Passed to Fail for the election ballot numbering motion and changing 8 year old to 8th grader in Peter Lee’s report.

(Note: The Clerk did not make the date change as the original 04-29-02 date as it was indeed the date of the meeting.  The original meeting had been moved).

Passed:  x – y – z  

Treasurer’s Report – Robert Messenger

Duration: 31 minutes 7:56 – 8:27

The Treasurer presented the standard monthly report to the board.  A copy will be sent to the Web team for posting.  He provided a line-by-line explanation for the benefit of the new board members and visitors.  Total fund balances after all income was reported as

The Treasurer recommended that we pay of the remaining amount owed to the Life membership fund that we had borrowed and that is currently being paid back on a monthly basis.

Coordinator Reports

Database Coordinator – Mark Kaprielian

Duration: 19 minutes 8:27 – 8:46

The Database Coordinator reported that serious consideration to new approaches to dealing with renewals and event registrations should be examined during the upcoming term.  He sited the as a recent example, the April 7th Team Tournament.

Despite several process improvements over the last term, registration and subsequent database updates still suffer greatly from many difficulties.  The current process for getting updates into the database follows one of two approaches, which are outlined here.

      Method 1 – the traditional method.

                  This method is what would be done by someone using the Maca database as a pre-canned application.   The process is approximately as follows using the Member Edit Form:

1.      If the player has a USCF ID number, enter it into the search by ID box.  If found, check each piece of name, address, contact, email and expiration information and update the database field as needed.  On average, this takes 2 minutes per person.

2.      If the ID number was not found, search by name to verify player is not in the database under a temporary or incorrect ID number.  On average, this search and verification takes 1 minute.

3.      If the player needs to be entered as a new record, enter all the information.  Check the USCF ratings page and see if an ID number is available for the player.  If not, assign a temporary Maca ID number.  On average, this takes 5 minutes

4.      If no information other than Name, ID number and new expiration date are provided, the update process can take as little as 20 seconds.  This is typical for updates sent by other board members via email but not for lists of updates coming from events.

5.      If any conflicting information appears, record the conflicting information and send inquiries back to try and resolve them.

Summary:  This approach is prone to typing errors unless copy and pastes are done for each field, which slows down the entire process but improves quality.   Assuming 1000 members renewing each year with the best case scenario of them having renewed with someone feeding (this means they are doing the address verification work) the database manager with just the Name, ID and new expiration, no address change necessary, at 20 seconds average this would yield 5.6 hours each year.  Again, this is straight update of expiration only and does not include the time someone else spent to figure out if there were any other data changes.  If 33 % had an address change, using a median averaging of the processing times of 3 minutes, the entire membership would take about 18 hours to update.  This again does not take into account duplication of effort to pre-determine before sending, which members have some data change.

            Method 2 – the traditional method.

                  This method is what would be done by someone using the Maca database who is well versed in doing Append, Update and Create queries.  By “scrubbing” the data and pushing it into a pre-established Comparison table, the advanced tools built into the Maca Database application over the 2001-2002 term can be used.  One tool (specialized form) displays the new information against the existing information flagging any differences and allows the database manager to select the more valid data to do the updates.  The other tool (another specialized form) allows the database manager to copy over any individual field or select All to load the information for a new members.  The process is approximately as follows assuming the data is sent in an Excel spreadsheet:

1.      Fix column headers to match proper field names

2.      Insert a dummy 1st row of data that has only letters for each field.  This is to ensure that all fields are imported as text fields.  Especially important for ID numbers and zip codes

3.      Import into Access

Sort on city, correct spellings, lookup up missing zip codes at  Review for any other missing data that can be filled in

4.      Sort on ID numbers, check USCF website for missing numbers, assign Maca temporary Ids for any unknown ID numbers.  

5.      If the data is submitted so late that the USCF cross table is available then instead (this is good for entry purposes but possibly bad for the members in that we are late getting them into the database), edit the cross table such that the name and ID numbers are in their own columns.  Import the names and ID data into Access.   Run a query to parse the Names into first and last names.   Do a Cross query to match Last and First names to try and automate filling in ID numbers.   Generally it has to be done by hand as First names tend not to match exactly.  Do a cross query to match ID numbers against the current database and separate those players found into a table for using the Existing players tool.  Take the remaining people and put them into a table for using the Bulk update tool.

6.      If the cross tables are not yet available, follow the above procedure substituting in a manual look up of ID numbers for the cross query matching.

      Summary:  This approach results in a much higher quality of processing as the data is not manually read or touched.  Using this approach, the sender of the information doesn’t have to do any work to see if there are any changes in the information.  The comparison tool in the database will do this work.  This allows them to simply make corrections on the fly to pre-loaded spreadsheets they were issued without worry about making sure they flag which were changed.  This may seem minor but if they miss flagging an entry, it would not, without the aid of the database tools be caught and would not make it into the database.  The sender is still required to verify each and every entry form against the spreadsheet information.    At the database end, scrubbing and preparing the data for use in the tools typically takes about an hour but can easily go longer depending on the number of players with no USCF ID numbers.   It is also possible for the people taking registration to simply be focused on entry fees and collecting renewals leaving all validation of the information to the database processor.   This shifts much of the burden of processing to the database manager but creates a time delay between when the entry forms are sent as well as loses the ability to clarify any information with the people in person.  Since the registration process must do accounting anyway, with the pre-loaded spreadsheets, we found that there is less redundant effort by doing as much processing at registration time.  It also distributes the effort and allows breaking the work down into separate pieces which in turn could be handled by more people.   Once the data is set up for the database tools, processing either an existing or new members takes on average 20 seconds.   For 1000 members with address changes that were to be processed by the tools, the total time would be approximately   1 hour for import and 5.5 hours for processing making 6 hours total per year if everyone renewed at once.   Assuming renewals done processed once a month, then 12 hours for import and 5.5 for processing to make 17 hours per year.  This does not include any time estimates for work done by others to send the information.

What it really takes – Using the recent April 7th event:

Peter Lee who was the primary coordinator for the event reports that he spent approximately 25 hours pre-event dealing with registration issues and approximately 20 hours post event.   Peter then submitted an Excel spreadsheet with all the changes and updates required due to the event.  The spreadsheet had been pre-loaded from the database to facilitate Peter’s use.   There were 101 players who had to be updated in the database.  Despite the fact that the data was returned in a very orderly fashion as was intended, the database processor had to select between one of two methods of updating the database.

The database processor worked on the 101 Join/Renewal player info in one continuous session.   Using method 2 to scrub and prepare the data for use with the tools, it took, 5 hours.  About four hours were scrubbing and one hour was actual processing.   

Totals:   Pre-event  25 hours, Post event sending preparation 20 hours, Database update 5 hours for a total of 50 hours.    64 of those players had no pre-existing USCF ID numbers.

Even with all that effort, no Date of Births were entered and therefore, none of the new Maca members will see themselves on the Age based Ratings list that we post.  This will generate many emails and calls.

The report concludes with the following information:

      From June 1, 2001 to May 31, 2002

                  Maca Database Application re-work            76 hours

                                                                  Data entry        91 hours

                                                                  Total                167 hours (uncompensated)

      Note:  General Maca time not including Database or Web -       58 hours (uncompensated)

Web Master Report – Mark Kaprielian

Duration: 2 minutes 8:46 – 8:48

The Web Master reported that a new set of Future events pages was rolled out to the web.   These pages present the information in a much more unified manner and present the user with a range of options for finding the information they may be interested in.  The new pages are generated by an on-line database.   Each event has a printable flyer with an optional (based on the Organizers choice) entry form.  In addition, the home page has a weekend summary of upcoming events that is automatically updated and rolled-off over time.  The next phase to be implemented is that of allowing organizers to update the information themselves thereby completely eliminating the many hours spent by the web team in updating the information from the various formats that organizers submit them.

      From June 1, 2001 to May 31, 2002

                                                      Maca Web Work       483 hours (uncompensated)                       

Tournament Coordinator’s Report – Steve Frymer

Duration: 5 minutes 8:48 – 8:53

The Mass Open made $2,800.  The three-day event increased by 20% while the other events stayed about the same.   We had a record number of hotel reservations, which significantly reduced our costs.  Most of these were Adult overnights.  There were no noise conflicts.

Clubs coordinator

Duration: 2 minutes 8:46 – 8:48

Robert King reported that clubs are working hard and that  the MetroWest Chess Club received the USCF 2002 Club of the Year.   On the cape, the Boarders Chess Club is making the game more visible to the public by their presence there.

Committee Reports


Old Business


New Business

Selection of Coordinators for the new term

Duration: 47 Minutes 8:53 – 9:40

Larry Eldridge stated that he will not decline his being elected to the board.


            King, Eldridge 2nd

To ratify the results of the Election and to authorize the disposal of the ballots.

Passed:  8 – 0 - 1  


            Eldridge, Messenger 2nd

To ascertain whether Mr. Burger and Mr. Kelleher accept or decline the nomination with a deadline of the next board meeting.  If they have not accepted by that date shall be considered to have declined the election. 

Passed:  9 – 0 - 0  







Mark Kaprielian



Budget coordinator

Bob Messenger



Club coordinator

Robert King



College Chess Coordinator




Comeau Fund coordinator




Data processing coordinator

Mark Kaprielian



Education coordinator




Fund raising coordinator




League coordinator




Master chess coordinator




Membership secretary

Gus Gosselin




Mark Kaprielian



Prison chess coordinator

Steve Frymer



Promotion coordinator

Frank Del Bonis



Publications Coordinator

Robert King



Scholastic coordinator

Tony Gavelis



Tournament coordinator

Steve Frymer



Volunteer coordinator

Harvey Reed



Web Master

Mark Kaprielian





            Gavelis, Lee, Messenger 2nd

Motion to accept the above slate of nominees for Coordinators

Passed:  9 – 0 - 0  


Establishment of Budget Committee

Duration: 3 minutes 9:50 – 10:53


            Messenger, Kaprielian 2nd

To appoint a committee comprised of Bob Messenger Chairman, Frank Del Bonis, Steve Frymer, Robert King and Peter Lee, to present a budget to the board for approval by the August meeting.

Passed:  8 – 0 - 0  

Establishment of Investment Committee

Duration: 10 minutes 10:10 – 10:20


            King, Eldridge 2nd

Motion to establish a committee comprised of Robert King Chairman, Bob Messenger, Gus Gosselin and Frank Del Bonis.




            Messenger, Del Bonis 2nd

Motion to postpone the motion till the next meeting.

Passed:  6 – 2 - 0  


Establishment of Bylaws Committee

Duration: 5 minutes 10:20 – 10:25


            Messenger, Del  Bonis 2nd

To appoint a committee comprised of Mark Kaprielian Chairman, Robert King, Steve Frymer, Harvey Reed charged with proposing a separation of the bylaws into bylaws and Policies and Procedures for the September board meeting.

Passed:  7 – 0 - 0  

Repayment of Loan from Life Membership

Duration: 8 minutes 10:10 – 10:20


            Messenger, Kaprielian 2nd

Motion to repay the balance of the loan from the Life Membership fund.

 the above slate of nominees for Coordinators

Passed:  8 – 0 - 0  




Instruction to coordinators

Duration: 9 minutes 10:25 – 10:34


            Reed, Del Bonis 2nd

Motion to have the coordinators submit a draft plan for the year by the July board meeting.

Passed:  6 – 1 - 1  

Next Meeting


            Reed, Messenger 2nd

To set the July meeting for Wednesday July 17th at 7:30 PM

Passed:  8 – 0 - 0  




            Eldridge, Del Bonis 2nd

Moved to Adjourn

Passed: 8 – 0 - 0