2020 Minutes



2020 Minutes for the Annual Business Meeting of the Idaho Chess Association

February 16, 2020

3:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Riverside Hotel, 2900 W Chinden Blvd, Boise, ID 83714


Call to Order and Pledge of Allegiance:

Adam Porth, Idaho Chess Association (ICA) President, called the meeting to order at 3 pm.



Voting Members: Adam Porth, Dr. Richard Nathan, Alise Pemsler, Jay Simonson, Jeff Roland, Jef Leifeste

Non-Voting Members: Michael Presutti, Corey Longhurst, Shane Taylor


Reading of Mission and Values:  The mission of the Idaho Chess Association is to provide organized chess play, coordinate chess activities within the state, support and develop local chess clubs, encourage player development, and to enhance appreciation of chess.  The Idaho Chess Association values fair play and good sportsmanship, education through sharing and teaching, chess players with diverse abilities and skills, creating a variety of chess activities and opportunities, decisions using sound logic and forethought, and continued growth and learning through chess. 


Approval of Minutes

Motion 2020 (Alise Pemsler): motion to waive



Presidents Report:  Adam Porth

  • Alpha Rocky Mountain Rating Program - Desmond Porth still working on it. It is online but needs its own domain name in order for it to work. Cost is $30 for 3 months. Adam asked if we want to continue pursuing it. Discussion: Jeff Roland questioned why we need it if we have US Chess ratings as it will be a lot of work and if something is amiss we will reconcile to US Chess ratings. Adam reminded everyone that it was a school project.Jay pointed out that $30/3 months as an ongoing expense is costly. Dr. Nathan asked who it would be for. Target group would be for our non-US Chess rated tournaments of which we have very few such as scholastic. Unanimous decision to not pursue the Alpha Rocky Mountain Rating Program.


  • 28 Events (637)

    • 8 Scholastic Events (players 455)

  • 77 + players qualified for Scholastic State at this point; February 22 WRST will add around 45 players to bring the total to more than we’ve had at previous State tournaments. Jay brought up that at one point around 400 competed at State. Adam said that was before we went to a qualifying system so that students were more prepared to play at State.


Adam honored those that worked hard and admire the diversity of winners:

  • Idaho Representatives:

    • Barber (K-8): Justin He, 

    • Susan Polgar: Temi Aderogba, 

    • Ruth Haring: Rosemary Bowyer, 

    • Denker (9-12):  Jacob Nathan

    • Senior (50+):  Michael Presutti


  •   State Champions:  Jacob Nathan and Kevin Xu

  • State Scholastic Co-Champion:  Alex Goodwin and William Wang

  • Open Champion:  Andrew Kitterman

  • State Blitz Champion:  James Wei

  • EIO  Josep Companyo

  • SIO Andrew Duren

  • Norman Friedman Memorial Alex Machin

  • WIO  Seth Machakos

  • NIO Michael Cambareri

  • Player’s Memorial Bryce Leifeste

  • Summer Classic Forrest Zeng, Bryan Li, & Joshua Price

  • Hall of Fame Forrest Zeng

  • Senior Open Michael Presutti

  • Woman’s Champion: no one for the previous year

  • 2018 Hall of Fame Inductees:  David and Ellen Baumann


US Chess has added another section to the scholastic invitationals. Idaho’s 2020 Scholastic State Tournament on March 14 will reflect these changes.

    • Rockefeller (K-5)

    • Barber (6-8)

    • Denker (9-12)


Membership Report:  Adam Porth

  • Membership is currently 96

  • Premium memberships 70


Fee Structure and President’s Budget Report:  Adam Porth

ICA Regular Membership for all  $15.00/year 

  • Titled tournaments require (Blitz Championship, Idaho Closed, Idaho Open)

  • $5 Discount to all tournaments (if pre-registered) and others as posted.

ICA Premium Membership $35/year

  • Discount to titled tournaments (if pre-registered) and others as posted.

  • Northwest Chess Magazine


Discussion: Jay asked if his membership was current as the online list says 2017. Adam said Eric Holcomb keeps the NW Chess membership list up to date and we’d have to look into Jay’s membership after the meeting. Alise asked if we needed a family membership. It is easier to monitor without the additional categories and the current system is working well.


2020 Budget Presentation


Treasurer's Report:  Jay Simonson announced that he is resigning as Treasurer as of this meeting. He recommends giving the new treasurer the option to change banks if the Idaho Central Credit Union is not convenient and requests that outstanding checks be cashed as soon as possible, by May 17, 2020, to enable this. Jeff and Alise like that ICCU is open on Saturdays to deposit money taken in at tournaments, memo line on deposits can reflect source of funds, and they are easy to work with. Jay will work with the new treasurer to transition accounts. Checks need to be ordered if we are keeping the ICCU account. New checks will say Must Be Cashed Within 90 Days.


Idaho Central Credit Union 

 $ 1,273 Beginning Balance 1/1/2019

+ 12,930 Deposits

- 12,590 Withdrawals

-      125 Fees (overdrafts) approx 6 checks

$  1,488 Ending Balance 12/31/2019


$481.82 1/7/2020 Bank Balance

-438.75 Outstanding Checks as of 1/7/2020

+87.59 Checks over a year old

130.66 Available Balance 1/7/2020


PayPal Account

$2,800 approximate balance.

Adam has moved money from our PayPal account to ICCU to cover current tournament expenses. Jeff Roland asked why we don’t transfer all funds from PayPal to ICCU. Adam says he pays bills for our website through PayPal and that he finds it easier to manage than the bank account. Jeff said it could be automatically deposited into the ICCU. Adam said that he didn’t want to get into a discussion about this at this time. He said the new treasurer will have input. Jay commented that Adam had asked him as Treasurer if we couldn’t use PayPal as our bank account but this isn’t an option as we have to have a point to deposit physical cash from our tournaments.


Everyone gave a round of applause to Jay for his time as Treasurer.


Adam thanked the following donors: 

    • Joyce Friedman

    • Adam Porth

    • Marc Friedman

    • Alise Pemsler

    • Parents of Andrew Kitterman

    • Anonymous donor $100

    • Anonymous donor $100

    • Charles Schwab


Idaho Gives Fundraising Campaign May 2019: Alise said there were many small donors as well as a $500 donation from Washington player Ronald Kirsch for a total of $1,659 raised during the campaign, exceeding our goal of $1500. We purchased 20 DGT clocks engraved with the ICA logo for $900 and deposited the rest in the ICCU account. This year, Alise would like to increase the goal this May and with the proceeds purchase folding chairs to be stored at Engineering Consultants Inc. Jef Leifeste requested that we decide as a group what we will purchase. The group suggested ICA banners, more DGT clocks, tournament equipment, brochures, swag such as coffee mugs for purchase/prizes.


Jeff Roland asked how much better financially we are this year versus last year. Adam said we were in a better position and that we are able to pay Riverside venue costs for the Closed, reimburse Alise for the US Chess Scholastic Membership Vouchers she funded last year, no outstanding trophy balances, and we are current with NW Chess. Alise said that we net $300 to $600 at the tournaments held at ECI since we don’t have to pay for the venue and she has reworked donated trophies to keep costs down. In the past, we tended to just break even on most tournaments if that. Adam pointed out that we are also budgeting now so are more in control of expenses. Jeff Roland suggested that we hold a fundraising tournament to raise money. 


Old Business:  Adam Porth

ICA Fees

Prize Funds

  • Prizes for $ tournaments changed to Top 3, Class B, C, D, E, F, UNR

  • $100, $75, $50 and $20 per class


New Business:


Treasurer Discussion: No one has stepped forward yet. Dan Looney wants to but isn’t interested in doing computer work. As this is an integral part of the position, Adam declined the offer. 


Scholastic Tie-breakers: Policy in place but no ability to deal with tiebreakers. There have been a number of complaints that because we have 5 rounds, there frequently are ties for the Denker/Barber/etc representative. People want it more definitive than mathematical tiebreakers. Jef Leifeste presented a solution. At the South Central Regional Qualifier, Barry Eacker and Peter Clark used double blitz and armageddon (4 against 6 minutes) games to determine a clear winner. This adds an extra element to the competition and is similar to how the World Championship is run. It is certainly exciting and more satisfying for the players. It promotes the sport as it gives parents something to watch. Dr. Nathan asked if the younger players would be able to do this as they have a harder time with time management. Jeff Roland supports the system for only section winners, not the grade levels. Jef Leifeste said that this is only for 1st place overall in each of the 3 sections. Adam clarified that this is only for State, not the Regional Qualifiers. Discussion continued as to how to handle an odd number of tiebreak players. 2 systems were presented: Round Robin or Elimination. The group decided that Elimination was the best determination of a winner. Jef will finalize the wording.


Time Controls and Rounds for State Scholastic:  Discussion on G/30 vs G/45. Jay asked why two different time controls for the sections. Jeff felt it went too long last year and was against it as the tournament would end too late, and that if time controls were the same then families could go home together. Adam said the long round was due to the Increment added to the time control and that using a delay of 5 seconds would not have the same effect. Adam reminded us that we had this discussion previously and decided on G/45 for the high school section. Dr. Nathan prefers the longer control for high school. Mike Presutti added that it takes away an element of luck and depends more on skill to play the longer control. Jef Leifeste asked if we were having a delay or not. Jeff Roland explained that d5 takes away the Insufficient Losing Chances rule and also allows for notation. It’s standard in US Chess to have d5.


It was decided that the tournament should start earlier so that the high school section won’t end late and the younger players can go home earlier. Jeff and Alise will determine the start time. All agreed on pairing sections continuously instead of having set round times.


The Tournament of Champions will be the following day so that the top 2 from each section can plan to stay in Boise for the playoff either at Foerstel Design in Boise or Jef Leifeste’s house in Eagle. Time control G/45;d5.


Annual Meeting Discussion: early morning before round 3 or in the afternoon before round 4? Saturday or Sunday? It was decided 3pm on Sunday.


Tournament Discussions:

  • Location of 2020

    • Summer Classic - Boise

    • Player’s Memorial - Mountain Home

    • Hall of Fame - determined by recipient’s location

    • Norman Friedman - Boise (always per Joyce Friedman’s request)

    • Idaho Closed - Twin if Barry can run it. Idea is to rotate between Boise and Twin

    • Idaho Open - Red Lion, Pocatello, 2 day event, Jay running

    • State Scholastic K-5 - Boise

    • State Scholastic 6-8 - Boise

    • State Scholastic 9-12 - Boise

    • Tournament of Champions (Invitational Scholastic 1st & 2nd in each of 3 sections) - Boise, day after State Scholastic

    • Women’s and Girls State Tournament - Boise

    • Senior Tournament - Boise, share date/venue with Scholastic Team

    • Scholastic Team Tournament - Boise, share date/venue with Senior 

    • Blitz Championship - Boise


Venues: Alise relayed that Riverside has given us credit so that we don’t have to pay a deposit when we reserve the venue and can pay after the tournaments are over. Adam added that we have a good relationship with Riverside. Jeff Roland asked about JUMP. Alise said they gave us a free venue for blitz one year but then said they only give a nonprofit one time free. Dr. Nathan said that JUMP is a great location but they are known to charge high fees for the space.The Riverside is more expensive over the President’s 3 day weekend; cost averages $350/day to hold the Closed in Boise.


Engineering Consultants Inc. (ECI) is a great venue. Jeff asked if Alise could find another similar location. BSU is not a viable venue anymore as we don’t have a reliable contact. The club is not reliable.


Adam clarified tournament locations. Each region is to have an Open and a Scholastic qualifier. If demand/turnout is good, a region such as Boise can hold more tournaments.


Discussion: Scholastic Team cannot be held at the same time as Scholastic State as not everyone will qualify for State. The Senior cannot be held on the same day as the Tournament of Champions as it is too close to the Closed, and the TOC is a private invitational event.  Summer Classic: Trader Joes will give food prizes for the Summer Classic. ECI has a grill and Alise wondered if we could have a fundraiser barbecue. Jeff suggested having it outdoors at a park. Adam said that is totally up to the regional trustee.


US Chess Delegate nominations (need two): St. Louis, MO August 8-16

Adam Porth and Alise Pemsler are listed as the delegates if no one else is going. Adam might be a TD and going. Dr. Nathan would attend if it is during the Denker but not later in the week. Mike Presutti said he would tentatively attend if he is available and playing in the Senior invitational.



Motion to make Jeff Roland a Member At-Large

Motion (Adam Porth and Jay Simonson):  Announce candidates for 2020-2022 Regional Trustees: (Adam Porth - North, Barry Eacker - SC, Jay Simonson - East, Alise Pemsler- West)


2020 Board of Directors (next cycle is 2021):

  • President - Adam Porth

  • Vice President - Richard Nathan

  • Secretary - Alise Pemsler

  • Treasurer - position vacant (Alise Pemsler)

  • At-large - Jef Leifeste

  • At-large - Jeff Roland


2020-2022 Trustees:

  • North - Adam Porth

  • South Central - Barry Eacker

  • East - Jay Simonson

  • West - Alise Pemsler


  • Social Media Coordinator - Deborah Van Law

  • Historian - Jeff Roland

  • Games Editor - Jeff Roland

  • Membership Coordinator - Jeff Price


Staff Needed

  • Educational Coordinator

  • Solicitor for Donations (donations, grants, perks)

  • Public Relations/Media


Goals worked on in 2019 (last year)

  • Program to calculate Rocky Mountain Rating - Desmond Porth (cost 30/mo.)

  • Solicit donors and sponsors for tournaments

  • Enhance scholastic and school outreach in each region

  • Solicit more participation in organization and tournaments 

  • Find pgn player that can be used with our website (ChessBase Viewer). Now have MicroBase. In website so you can look at previous games

  • Investigate incidentals and overhead.

  • Compile items need accomplished yearly

  • Obtain ICA membership perks


Goals for 2020

  • Solicit donors and sponsors for tournaments

  • Enhance scholastic and school outreach in each region

  • Solicit more participation in organization and tournaments

  • Jeff Roland working on super data base to make pgns available up to current games

  • Investigate incidentals and overhead.

  • Adam to release budget next month for each tournament

  • Obtain ICA membership perks


Motions from the Floor / Other Business:

Security: Richard Nathan asked if our website is secure. He asked because Continental Chess site was hacked; Utah Chess uses their website and was also hacked. Both lost money on tournament registrations as a result. Adam clarified that our money is not through our website but through PayPal.


Treasury Issues: All reimbursement requests go to Adam until we find a replacement for Jay.


Conflicting Dates on Calendar: Alise asked if there could be a protocol for establishing dates as there are several dates circulating on different calendars. Alise commented that the Western Regional and the Girls were listed incorrectly. Adam said that in the last monthly Board meeting, they decided to eliminate the ICA google calendar. Dates are now to be on the front page of the website. We are not to rely on the Google calendar.


US Chess Life Magazine: Mike Presutti asked why we don’t use Chess Life to advertise our tournaments. The reason is because they 1) charge for the ads and our budget didn’t allow it; 2) we polled members and only one came to a tournament because of a TLA in the magazine; and 3) you have to commit to your tournaments (dates and venues) far enough in advance and we typically don’t have information that early. Dr. Nathan said it might make more sense for tournaments in border areas that would draw from neighboring states. Jeff pointed out that GM Yermolinsky came to a tournament once because of a TLA. Jay likes advertising in Chess Life because people who don’t read NW Chess. He also mentioned that in 2005 he hosted a GM and an IM in Pocatello as a result of a TLA.  Adam said our most likely tournament for a TLA is the Norman Friedman. It was decided to advertise the Norman Friedman this year. Alise suggested we budget for a few ads now that we have more money. Jeff pointed out that you cannot cancel a tournament if it has been advertised in Chess Life and that you have to place the ad to run 2.5 months before the tournament. Cancelations jeopardize our affiliate status. If Regional Trustees can organize in advance, we can consider advertising. 


Castling: Dr. Nathan asked about Rook/King castling. Michael Presutti said that it is acceptable to use an upside down rook if no other piece is available. Jef Leifeste read from the current rule book: “If a piece isn’t available, the player stops both clocks to locate the piece and place it on the board. A player who cannot quickly find such piece may request the assistance of the TD. It is common practice, however, to play using an upside down rook for a second queen. In absence to the player’s announcement to the contrary, an upside down rook shall be considered a queen.” This is a change from the previous ruling. The king should be touched first but it is not illegal to touch the rook first unless it is announced at the beginning of the tournament.



Jeff Roland moved to adjourn.

Jay Simonson seconded the motion.

Meeting adjourned at 5 pm


Respectfully submitted,


Alise Pemsler


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Jeff Roland at the Idaho Closed
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