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A New Chapter for the USCF

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There's a new chapter in the USCF rulebook and it might be Chapter 11. The United States Chess Federation – fresh from board elections, the discovery of a massive fiscal shortfall, and a spate of resignations (DD 135) – just laid off 40% of its staff, 17 people. I've been in charge of such mass head-chopping myself and it isn't pretty for the choppees or the choppers. Drastic action was obviously called for. New El Presidente Beatriz Marinello will try to step through the landmines and in a press release she spoke of the "daunting challenges ahead." Apart from the disasters that have been made public, sources say there are several more scandals yet to be unveiled. Maybe they thought Arthur Anderson was Erik's brother?! Plenty of her countrywoman Isabel Allende's brand of magic realism will be required for Marinello and the USCF to survive.

[ Don't forget to vote in our poll on how to save the USCF! ]

The USCF's line of credit at the bank is soon to be cut off and the line of vendors and others who are owed money is long and getting longer. (John Henderson applies a Dennis Miller line: "They're more overdrawn than M.C. Escher's doodle pad!") This means the USCF might not be able to afford to move to their new location in Tennessee. (My "last train to Crossville" joke in #135 appears to have been prescient.) Revelations about contracts signed regarding the US Women's Olympiad training squad are also expected and I very much hope that program is not harmed. Apparently former executive director Niro was pulling so much wool over so many eyes that he must own his own sheep ranch. (Maybe his own eyes? What did he know and when?) The phenomenally named Grant Perks is now serving as office manager. No word if his assistant Ivana Steele is coming with him.

The casualties included most of the senior staff of Chess Life magazine, which to be honest has been a joke of long standing to much of the US chess community (the magazine, not the staff). Now there will be much less to laugh about after unavoidable cutbacks. Will they bring in someone with experience who can also move things toward a significantly cheaper web magazine presence? I'm sitting by the phone...

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    About this Entry

    This page contains a single entry by Mig published on August 21, 2003 3:29 AM.

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