USCF Executive Board blocks efforts to hold US Chess Championship

Late last year the newly elected Executive Board of the United States Chess Federation announced that the US Championship would be canceled for financial reasons.

The US Chess Championship has traditionally been held every year. There have since been several efforts by private parties to raise the funds necessary to hold a US Championship.

Luis Salinas, a chess organizer in Dallas, reportedly found sponsors for the event, but then was advised to call off his efforts by Tim Redman, a member of the USCF Executive Board who is also from Dallas.

More recently, Yasser Seirawan, a grandmaster and editor of Inside Chess Magazine, found a group in the Seattle area which is willing to provide the funds necessary to host the event for the next ten years. It costs about $125,000 to hold the US Chess Championship. The group will also pay the USCF a small percentage for the right to hold the event.

In short, rather than spend $125,000 to hold the event, the USCF will receive a few thousand dollars in return for allowing someone else to hold the event.

There is one catch however: The Seattle group wants a contract giving it the right to hold the US Championship every year for the next ten years.

The USCF Executive Board has turned down this deal, offering three years instead.

The chief opponents of the Seirawan - Seattle deal are said to be Helen Warren and Tim Redman. Helen Warren wants the US Woman's Championship abolished permanently, but she has no support for her extreme views.

It is a mystery why the USCF Executive Board would refuse outside sponsorship for an event which has never made money and has always been a financial loss for the USCF.

Sam Sloan

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