Documents covering the Business of the Wisconsin Chess Association. Here you can find minutes of the board meetings, the current bylaws, letters from the President, and other official documents of the WCA.

2013 President's Report

  • Written by Mike Nietman
  • Published: 15 September 2013
  • Last Updated: 15 September 2013
Holiday Inn-Neenah, Neenah

We did it! The 2013 US Open in Middleton was a smashing success with 514 participants. I especially want to thank the 137 Wisconsinites who participated. There were minimal issues and everyone loved the hotel and Greenway Station neighborhood. While I haven’t seen the final accounting yet, the event, which normally loses money for the USCF and who consider breaking even a good year, should make money this year.

Congratulations to Wisconsin resident GM Josh Friedel who tied for first with 8 points and won the Armageddon playoff for the title and a spot in the 2014 US Championships. Good luck Josh! I also want to congratulate Kenosha’s Scott Haubrich for winning clear first amongst the experts with 7 points.

The 2013 US Open was the first in Wisconsin since 1953. (An earlier one was in 1935.) The Convention Bureau and hotel are interested in a bid for 2018 but we’ll have to wait and see what transpires. The event is booked thru 2016 and there was talk last year of going back to Vancouver, WA for 2017 but the east coast needs to have the event there as it hasn’t been there since 2007.

Read more: 2013 President's Report

2012 President's Report

  • Written by Mike Nietman
  • Published: 03 September 2012
  • Last Updated: 09 June 2013
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!

Read more: 2012 President's Report

2011 Presidents Report

  • Written by Mike Nietman
  • Published: 08 September 2011
  • Last Updated: 22 June 2012
WCA President’s Report
2011 Annual Membership Meeting
Howard Johnson Inn & Conference Center, Wausau
September 4, 2011
The WCA had a good year. Our financial position continues to be strong although we lost about $450 last year. This year Wisconsin has gained clubs, organizers and TD’s. Make sure to check out the clubs’ page of our website to see if there is a new club in your area or to make sure your local club is listed. If not, please let me know. 
We’re pleased to see a large number of events on our fall calendar but there is a lack of events in the spring and summer. A recent analysis of events by state showed that Wisconsin had twenty weekends with one event and five weekends with two events between June 1, 2010 and May 31, 2011.  That means that there were 27 weekends without rated chess in Wisconsin. From October 1, 2011 thru December 18, 2011, a span of 12 weekends, there will be at least eleven events on eight weekends. Organizers need to consider spreading out these events more. We’re all competing for the same entry fee dollars. Spacing events out will encourage play and draw more players overall.
When deciding on when to hold an event, tournament organizers need to contact the state tournament clearinghouse director Guy Hoffman to find open dates on the tournament calendar. Guy can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Read more: 2011 Presidents Report

2010 WCA President's Report

  • Written by Mike Nietman
  • Published: 21 September 2010
  • Last Updated: 21 September 2010


WCA President’s Report

2010 Annual Membership Meeting

Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel, Madison

September 5, 2010



The WCA had another quiet year.  Our financial position continues to be strong.  To keep being strong as an organization we need to continue to develop new organizers and tournament directors so there is continued need for mentoring them.  If you are one of these new organizers or TD’s, just ask to assist at an event run by a more senior organizer or TD and they’ll be happy to show you the ropes.


Unfortunately last May the USCF Executive Board voted 3-2 to deny our bid to host the 2013 US Open in Madison.  The main reason given was that a majority of the board didn’t think that Madison was enough of a destination city for a US Open.  Of course we disagree with that viewpoint and I’ll continue probing for a possible opening for us.  It should be noted that USCF National Event Director Pat Knight Smith told me that the proposed contract from the Middleton Marriott was the “best US Open bid she’d ever received.”  Basically she asked for everything with the thought of giving things back as needed but they gave her everything she asked for.  Wisconsin last hosted a US Open in 1954 so it is about time!


I’m happy to see so many events on our fall calendar but there is a dearth of events in the spring.  Several spring events have either moved or ceased to exist.  Organizers should consider holding events in the spring and early summer as there is a void to fill.  Players have expressed this to me.  When deciding on when to hold an event tournament organizers need to contact the state tournament clearinghouse director Guy Hoffman to find open dates on the tournament calendar.  Guy can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


I want to thank everyone for their support the last two years in my runs for USCF Executive Board.  This year I was fortunate enough to win the three way special election for two, one-year terms on the EB.  USCF Executive Director Bill Hall told me that the difference between me and the second place finisher was Wisconsin as we were fairly even over all the other states.  I took my seat on the EB at the recent Delegate’s Meeting at the US Open.  In our first EB meeting I was voted USCF Secretary.  For the remainder of the Delegate’s Meeting Sandy Pahl was elevated from Alternate Delegate to Delegate to take my former seat.


Following this meeting, in our next WCA Board Meeting we’ll be electing our delegates for next year’s national meetings which will be held in Orlando.


One item that the delegates passed was to create a voter registration for future EB elections.  If you wish to vote in EB elections you’ll need to register by March 31 but the exact methodology to do so is still being developed.  Registration is a one-time event, as long as membership stays current,  I will send out an e-mail letting everyone know how to do that.


As I stated, my current EB seat is only for one year.  That means I get to run yet again next year.  I have nomination papers with me and if you’d like to sign them, please let me know.


Fortunately the USCF is through most of the lawsuits that have dragged down their finances.  One last case stemming from the Polgar-Truong group of lawsuits is stayed pending a criminal case in California.


The USCF EB did vote last July to become involved in an arbitration case siding with Anatoly Karpov’s campaign as FIDE President against incumbent FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov who is also running.    The case will be heard later this month in the Court of Sport in Switzerland.  However, the cost exposure to the USCF is minimal as the lawyers engaged are working the case pro bono and Karpov’s campaign has promised to pick up any extraneous costs.


When all was said and done, the USCF had a $30,000 loss last year.  This was mainly due to some write-offs, lawsuits and final pay outs to an old employee benefit program.  This year the Delegates approved a budget with a $100,000 surplus.  Times will be tough for a couple of years yet, then the future looks much brighter.


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/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 University School of Milwaukee for dethroning seven time defending champion Madison West at the State Scholastic Championships.  Last March 420 students participated at UW-Oshkosh.  Congratulations to Neenah Middle School for capturing their first K-8 State Team Championship and to New Berlin Elmwood Elementary for capturing their first K-5 State Team Championship. 


The 2010 Arnold Denker Tournament of High School Champions was held in conjunction with the US Open in Irvine, CA.  Our representative was James Bowen of University School of Milwaukee.  He finished 2-3-1 in a highly competitive event.  The Delegates authorized a new event next year, an invitational tournament for K-8 State Champions with the eventual goal of having a tournament of elementary state champions and a tournament of middle school state champions.  The exact cutoffs are still being worked out with the various scholastic committees of the USCF but the event will start with a K-8 event next year.


Congratulations to John Veech for capturing the 2009 Wisconsin Chess Tour title.   Organizers desiring to have their event considered for Tour status need to contact Guy by November of the year before the tour.  The WCA wishes to thank Neil Gleason for volunteering to take over as Tour Statistician.


The WCA website may be viewed at  Tournament organizers are now able to add calendar items themselves and we encourage them to do so.  It is free advertising for their events.  We have not received any new stories in years and depend on the state players, organizers and TD’s to supply content.  If you have an interesting game to share or wish to write up a chess tournament or event, please do so and send it to Arlen or me.  Arlen may be reached at through the contact webmaster link and I may be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. 


Continued thanks to WCA Treasurer Ken Rasmussen for keeping our financial books in order.  He provides the Board with excellent financial statements and statistics.


The terms of office of Guy Hoffman, Peter Webster and Mike Nietman expire today.  I want to thank all of the Board members for their hard work and dedication this past year.  I also regret to announce that board member Ashish Vaja has resigned his seat on the board citing a business opportunity too good to pass up in Illinois.  So, the fourth place finisher in today’s election shall assume the remaining two years of his term.

2009 WCA President's Report

  • Written by Mike Nietman
  • Published: 26 September 2009
  • Last Updated: 21 September 2010
Annual Membership Meeting
Ramada Conference Center, Milwaukee
September 6, 2009

The WCA had a quiet year. Tournament attendance after a couple of growth years, showed some signs of decline. This might be due to the national economic conditions we are in. Our treasury is strong. New organizers and tournament directors continue to emerge but there is continued need for more of them and for mentoring them. If you are one of these new organizers or TD’s, just ask to assist at an event run by a more senior organizer or TD and they’ll be happy to show you the ropes.

The USCF lost $110,000 last fiscal year. This even with two bequests given to the USCF totaling around $400,000. So, as you can see, without the bequests, USCF would have had a huge loss. They did pay down the mortgage on the building by $100,000 but the rest of the bequest money was used to defend the Federation in six lawsuits. Four are related to the 2007 Executive Board election while another was dismissed and the sixth is with their former book and equipment vendor. For a full understanding of the lawsuits that are draining USCF resources please read Executive Director Bill Hall’s explanation on the USCF website and updated occasionally in Chess Life but basically the four related suits deal with the alleged actions of two winning candidates, Susan Polgar and Paul Truong and how they posted fake forum postings and arranged to break into USCF Secretary Randy Hough’s personal e-mail.

Read more: 2009 WCA President's Report


At least annually, the president of the WCA is required to present a "State of the Association" letter (at the membership meeting held during every championship). These official announcements are kept here.
Here are official minutes of the WCA board meetings.
Here are copies of old and new bylaws.