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MACA Board Minutes
 MACA Board Meeting, September 21, 2014
 New England Sports Academy, Westwood, Mass.


President N. Smolensky called the September Board Meeting to order at 4:42 PM at New England Sports Academy in Westwood. Six people were in attendance: President Nathan Smolensky, Vice President John Sadoff, Treasurer Robert Messenger, Clerk Nicholas Sterling, and Directors George Mirijanian and Edward Chiu.
Minutes of the August Board Meeting were distributed by N. Sterling, and some amendments requested.  * * MOTION made by R. Messenger and seconded by
G. Mirijanian to approve the August Board Meeting Minutes; with 1 abstention, the MOTION passed. * *
Treasurer: R. Messenger read the report from the 74th New England Open.  177 players participated, up from 162 in 2013; and the profit was $849.07, up from $630.03 in 2013.
Tournament: (a) R. Messenger confirmed upcoming dates and locations of tournaments: (i) Greater Boston Open, 10/26/14 in Marlboro; (ii) Pillsbury Memorial, 12/14/14 in Marlboro; (iii) MA G/60, 3/29/15 in Marlboro; (iv) MA Open, Memorial Day weekend; the location may be Marlboro again, but the room layout is a bit inconvenient for such a large event.
                        (b) At the NECA Meeting at the New England Open, Hal Terrie made a motion that NECA offer $500 to the state organization that bids for the 75th New England Open next fall to offset expenses for promotion. The deadline for bids was extended to 11/1/14. Hal Terrie also reported that the 65th NH Open would raffle off five free admissions to the New England Open.
                        (c) * * MOTION (914-1) made by R. Messenger and seconded by
G. Mirijanian to authorize MACA to run the 75th New England Open if NECA assigns it to MACA. The VOTE was taken; the MOTION passed unanimously. * *
Membership: (a) R. Messenger read the 9/17/14 Membership numbers as follows: Adults: 206 (+10); Junior 408 (+3); Life 208 (-1); Affiliate 4 (-1); Complimentary 11 (+10);
D. Library 6 (=); D. Subscriber 24 (-1);Exchange 16 (=); Library 2 (=); Prison 302 (+2); Subscriber 14 (+1). Total change in Membership and Subscribers: +13.
Scholastic:     (a) R. Messenger reported that the 2014 dates are set.
                        (b) The tentative dates for 2015 are: (i) Gus Gosselin Grade Championship, 1/3/15, BB&N School in Cambridge; (ii) Winter Team Challenge, 1/25/15; (iii) Girls’ Championship, 2/8/15; (iv) 4th Spiegel Cup Qualifer, 3/8/15; (v) Spiegel Cup Championship, 3/22/15. The location of all of these except the GGGC may be in Marlboro, but that is uncertain. The Girls’ Championship may be expanded to allow players from NY to participate.
                        (c) Spiegel Cup Series events in 2015 are: (i) Brockton, 1/18/15, Fuller Craft Museum; (ii) Westwood, 2/1/15, New England Sports Academy; (iii) Concord-Carlisle Chess Club, 2/28/15, Harvey Wheeler Center. On this last, it was agreed that a Saturday date for one of these was perfectly acceptable and maybe desirable.
                        (d) Complaints have been lodged by parents about the large number of tournaments, the difficulty posed to Spiegel Cup contenders to make all of them while other tournaments are on the schedule besides. November was pointed out as an especially crowded month. It was stated that given that the 4th Qualifier and Spiegel Cup are later this year than last, there is more time to spread out any remaining SCS events that need to be scheduled. Furthermore, the SCS events are intended to bring exposure to the different Affiliates, and to reward players who are persistent enough to play in more of them.
                        (e) In response to a question about the procedure for qualification for invitation, it was explained that the four winners of the Qualifiers in each section are chosen, and then the winner of the Spiegel Cup Series (with ALL events, including Qualifiers, taken together), and then the top five rated players. If the SCS winner is also a Qualifier winner, then the sixth highest rated player is chosen instead (there is no “second place” from SCS).   Once one has won one Qualifier, one may not win a second Qualifier (though one may do so in a different section).
Promotions: E. Chiu said that he would like to see each diverse task of Promotions be assigned to a specific specialist. He laid out several issues facing MACA concerning the dissemination of information media, including:
                        (a) How should news items submitted by MACA Members (such as Stephen Dann) and other interested parties be handled? It was agreed that the Chess News website should not devolve into a “link farm”, and that a MACA Blog be set up to publish news stories. N. Sterling mentioned that he has an active Blog that could help. T. Wang could set up a Blog and attach it to the website.   There may have to be a screening process to decide which submitted news stories should go on the Blog.
                        (b) What should go on the Chess News site? Only MACA-related entries submitted by MACA Officers and Directors.
                        (c) What should go on Facebook? Only summary items with links to the fuller copy when needed.
                        (d) What about the Twitter accounts? No decision was made; they appear to be predominantly inactive at this point.
                        (e) What else should go on the Blog? Obituaries, links to newspaper articles, local events, and tournament recaps.
                        (f) What should be done to promote Clubs? Each Chess Horizons issue will spotlight a different Club in the area. The next one coming up is Waltham Chess Club (which over the summer had its Club Championship and its first ever Blitz Championship).
                        (g) What is the status of the MACA banners to be purchased?
G. Mirijanian reported that the company planning to make the banner needs the original design of the chess piece MACA logo, and apparently Stephen Dann has the only original misplaced somewhere in his warehouse.   The banner can in face be designed without that graphic, but its appearance would be rather spartan as a result.
Education:     (a) N. Smolensky reported:
                                    (i) The MEETTI Guide should be published by the New Year. The Online Forum will take time to implement until we have schools in place to use it.
                                    (ii) The Education Committee will create a video that will explain the MEETTI Initiative, including its aim, the purchase of needed equipments (boards & sets), and instructing schools to run chess clubs and chess educational programs. The Forum and video are intended to make the MEETTI project a self-help one for the schools and teachers.
                        (b) N. Sterling reported:
                                    (i) The Education Expo may be held at the NESA SCS on 2/1/15, or possibly a different Scholastic event. Among other items to be featured may be SimChess, the alternative version of chess N. Sterling received in the mail; and the book Chess 101 by Dave Schloss, which N. Sterling may sell on Mr. Schloss’s behalf.
                                    (ii) G. Mirijanian suggested that MACA should have Danny Kopec or other noted chess analysts come to MACA events to go over games with players, as he himself does (and could be invited to do at the Expo). Danny Kopec could be invited to the MA Open.
Publications: N. Smolensky and R. Messenger reported:
                                    (a) There was a regrettable glitch with the delivery of the last Chess Horizons because not all the post offices were prompt about getting their copies out (they may have been short-staffed). The result was that many Members received their Chess Horizons after the New England Open had happened, rendering the ad inside the front cover obsolete. Only First Class copies were mailed promptly.
                                    (b) At the same time, the printing and mailing costs from the printer were both higher this time around. The printer has agreed to issue MACA a credit for the next issue.
                                    (c) 10/15/14 is the next deadline for publication of the Fall Issue, and Waltham Chess Club will be the featured Club.
                                    (d) The Pillsbury Memorial ad will be on the inside front cover, and Farzad Abdi, the co-winner of the New England Open, will be featured on the front cover.
Online Election:        (a) Mark Kaprielian needs to be contacted to start the process for next year rolling.
                                    (b) There are Bylaws changes to be brought to the table, including a proposal to change Officer and Director Term length (two years instead of one), and a proposal to reduce the size of the Board from eight Directors to six. (Should this latter Bylaws referendum, once placed on the Ballot, be rejected by the Membership, the first two runners-up after the top six Directors would be elected.)
                                    (c) We may test out the Online Elections process with these two Bylaws amendment proposals, feasible as long as the Bylaws changes are voted to be placed before the Membership at least 90 days before the Annual Meeting.
Old Business: MACA still needs to consider what Annuities and CDs to reinvest some of its funds in.
New Business:          (a) * * MOTION (914-2) made by R. Messenger and seconded by
G. Mirijanian to appoint the following Delegates to USCF: (i) Ken Ballou, Robert Messenger as principal; (ii) Nathan Smolensky, Walter Driscoll as alternates in that order. The VOTE was taken; the MOTION passed unanimously. * *
                                    (b) G. Mirijanian raised the questions of who the book vendor would be at future tournaments, and whether free entry fees will be extended to GMs and IMs. It was agreed to leave these questions to the Tournament Committee and for now to maintain the status quo.
President N. Smolensky adjourned the September Board Meeting at 7:37 PM. The date, time, and place of the November Board Meeting were set at Sunday 11/2/14, at 4:30 PM, at New England Sports Academy in Westwood.
                                                                        Respectfully submitted,
                                                                        Nicholas Sterling, Clerk