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MACA Board Minutes
 MACA Board Meeting, June 22, 2014
 Boylston Chess Club, 240 Elm Street #B9, Somerville, MA 02144



President N. Smolensky called the June Board Meeting to order at 3:11 PM at Boylston Chess Club in Somerville.  Ten people were in attendance: President Nathan Smolensky, Vice-President John Sadoff, Treasurer Robert Messenger, Clerk Nicholas Sterling, and Directors George Mirijanian, Dmitry Barash, Edward Chiu, Frida Kuzmin, Christopher Chase (departed 4:54 PM), and Tiffany Wang (arrived 3:18 PM; departed 4:50 PM).


Minutes of the May Board Meeting and May Annual Meeting were distributed by

N. Sterling and amendments requested for both. C. Chase asked for an explanation about the $2500 net loss listed for Changes in Funds Year-to-Date under Treasurer.

* * MOTION made by N. Smolensky and seconded by R. Messenger to approve the May Board Meeting Minutes; with 1 abstention, the MOTION passed.  MOTION made by

N. Smolensky and seconded by R. Messenger to approve the May Annual Meeting Minutes; with 3 abstentions, the MOTION passed. * *


Election: (i) G. Mirijanian reported that the Election results were the ones already stated, and amended, in the May Annual Meeting Minutes, and therefore he waived reading them again. (ii) * * MOTION (614-1) made by G. Mirijanian and seconded by

R. Messenger to accept G. Mirijanian’s report, to certify the Election results, and to authorize the destruction of the ballots. The VOTE was taken; the MOTION passed unanimously. * *


Treasurer: R. Messenger reported that because it was voted at the March Board Meeting to have only Quarterly Treasurer’s Reports given and not Reports at every Meeting as had previously been customary, and because he had already given the Quarterly Treasurer’s Report at the May Meeting, there was no Report for this Meeting.  R. Messenger had copies of the Treasurer’s Report given at the May Annual Meeting for anyone who needed them.


Membership: (a) R. Messenger read the 6/21/14 Membership numbers as follows: Adults: 205 (+1); Junior 403 (+10); Life 209 (-1); Affiliate 5 (=); Complimentary 1 (=);

D. Library 5 (=); D. Subscriber 22 (+1); Exchange 16 (=); Library 2 (+1); Prison 298 (+12); Subscriber 11 (+1).  Total change in Membership and Subscribers: +21.

                        (b) In response to a question from G. Mirijanian about whether Prison Memberships, which are funded by private donations, are prorated if they begin late in the year (with the Expiration Date always 12/15/14), R. Messenger confirmed that they are.

                        (c) In response to a question from C. Chase about how MACA strives to increase renewals, including from Members who have just expired, R. Messenger explained that he will usually send one additional postcard after the Expiration date to draw a Member back in.  He can also use e-mails, but mass e-mails tend to be blocked by ISP servers as spam.
                        (d) In response to a question from D. Barash about why Life Memberships are no longer sold, R. Messenger said that they had proven unprofitable for MACA in the past, especially when Life Members have to be sent gratis printed issues of Chess Horizons.  If we recommence Life Memberships, we will have to choose a fair market price and possibly exclude subscription to Chess Horizons.


Tournament: R. Messenger reported that the 83rd MA Open drew in 225 players, an increase of 6 players from last year, and made $2212.67 in profit, a decrease from $2731.14 from last year.  Donations from Walter Champion increased to $3309 from $1877 last year; these donations cover the Best Game Prizes and the postcards mailed to promote them.  It was noted that there was a disturbingly high number of refunds, $458, a big increase from $175 last year.


Website: (a) T. Wang asked that any Directors or Officers who answer e-mail sent to the MACA E-mail Forum CC their replies to info so that everyone else knows that the e-mail has been answered. (b) T. Wang also reminded the Board that MACA has a Google Grant to publish ads, and MACA needs to decide who will write up ad copy for Google. (c) There is a need for more photos on Facebook and the website, and

R. Messenger said that MACA needs to have a more reliable photographer available to cover all the major tournaments.


Scholastic: (a) R. Messenger reported on behalf of S. Frymer that the first three Spiegel Cup Qualifiers will be held at the Best Western in Marlborough on the dates 10/19, 11/9, and 12/7, and the Fall Team Tournament will be held at the Holiday Inn in Boxboro on 11/23, and the Hurvitz Cup on 4/12/15 also in Boxboro. (b) (i) Later in the Meeting it was mentioned that the division of grades into sections for the Hurvitz Cup will need to be reviewed by the Scholastic Committee, because a MACA Member has proposed a persuasive argument that the division needs to be changed. (ii) Also it was recommended to the Scholastic Committee to consider requiring Scholastic players to sign papers verifying the results of their games, as witnessed by the Tournament Director, before clearing off a finished game position.


Publications: N. Smolensky reported that the next deadline for submission of articles to Chess Horizons is 7/15/14.  This will allow for advertisement of the New England Open, but unfortunately is too late for the Sturbridge Open in August.  The Summer issue, another double one, should be released in early August.  The Spring one received numerous compliments, including from several prisoners.


Education: N. Sterling reported: (a) the Education Committee is working to complete the Teachers’ Guide for the MA Early Education Teacher Training Initiative (MEETTI), and most of the draft content has been written.  We plan to have a project in place this summer to start to contact schools with, and a few schools have expressed interest from what they have seen on the website. (b) The Education Expo, which was held in January in Boston, is planned to be scheduled next fall. (c) At NESA were held the April G/30, which was a Benefit for One Fund, and the May G/30, each of which drew in 8-12 players.  There should be more tournaments scheduled there over the summer. (d) At the Brockton Fuller Craft Museum, and the Concord-Carlisle Chess Club, were held inaugural events for their respective chess clubs.  The latter event was highly successful, drawing in 32 players.  Both clubs will hold future chess classes together with regularly scheduled tournaments.


Budget: R. Messenger reported that the Budget FY15 that was put together at the May Board Meeting will be published in the May Minutes online.  The Fiscal Year was changed to begin on 5/1/14 instead of 7/1/14 so that now the outgoing Board approves the incoming Board’s Budget.  If anyone wishes to make any changes in the Budget, he/she may propose the change with advance notice.


Committee Chair Nominations: [CLERK’s note: All Committee Chairmen and Coordinators listed below were elected without opposition.]

            Tournament Committee Chairman: Robert Messenger

            Scholastic Committee Chairman: Steven Frymer

            Publications Committee Chairman: Nathan Smolensky

            Education Committee Chairman: Nicholas Sterling

            Budget Committee Chairman: Robert Messenger

            Bylaws Committee Chairman: Robert Messenger

            Prison Chess Coordinator: Steven Frymer

            Membership Secretary: Robert Messenger

            Fundraiser Coordinator: Edward Chiu

            LMCF Coordinator: Steven Frymer

            Club Coordinator: Edward Chiu (George Mirijanian originally nominated himself, but then withdrew his nomination.)

            Volunteer Coordinator: Nathan Smolensky

            Assistant Clerk: Robert Messenger

            Parliamentarian: Robert Messenger

            Web Coordinator: Nicholas Sterling

            Promotions Committee Chairman: Edward Chiu (see MOTION 614-2 below)

            Online Elections Committee Chairman: Mark Kaprielian (see MOTION 614-3 below)


(a) * * MOTION (614-2) made by N. Smolensky and seconded by R. Messenger to replace the Promotion Coordinator with a Promotion Committee Chair; the Promotion Committee will have the same responsibilities as detailed in the MACA Bylaws: “The Promotions Committee Chair shall develop and coordinate programs to promote the corporation and its activities, endeavoring to increase the visibility and the participation in the game of chess.”  The VOTE was taken; the MOTION passed UNANIMOUSLY. * *


(b) * * ADVANCE MOTION (614-3) made by R. Messenger and seconded by

G. Mirijanian to create an Online Elections Committee to study how MACA should conduct online elections and make recommendations to the board on these matters.  By way of explanation, mailed ballots, especially this past year, have proven prohibitively wasteful of money, time, and effort.  Two years ago the Bylaws were amended to allow for electronically submitted ballots.  The VOTE was taken; the MOTION passed UNANIMOUSLY. * *


(c) * * ADVANCE MOTION (614-4) made by R. Messenger and seconded by

N. Smolensky to spend up to $500 from the Living Memorial Chess Fund to pay Mika Brattain’s expenses playing in the U.S. Cadet Championship.  The VOTE was taken; the MOTION passed UNANIMOUSLY. * *


Old Business: none


New Business: On request from G. Mirijanian, N. Smolensky agreed to create a survey that MACA plans to distribute to players.


President N. Smolensky adjourned the June Board Meeting at 6:16 PM.  The date, time, and place of the August Board Meeting were set at Sunday 8/17/14, at 3:00 PM, at Boylston Chess Club in Somerville.


                                                                        Respectfully submitted,




                                                                        Nicholas Sterling, Clerk