CJA
Chess Journalists of America

The following was published in The Chess Journalist, Vol. XXXII, No. 2, Consecutive No. 108, June 2003. Copyright 2003 by the Chess Journalists of America.

President's Message
Pete Tamburro

To the Members of the CJA:

It is time for me to say goodbye as CJA president. I can look back with some satisfaction that we have seen several important accomplishments as an organization.

  1. Establishment of an excellent website that has communicated with its membership in a timely manner and that helped the CJA awards process in ways not seen before. We owe a great deal to our webmaster, J. Franklin Campbell.

  2. The "reuniting" of the CJA and Cramer Awards as one process. Fred Cramer always meant it to be that way, and a good group of people demonstrated that you can put politics aside and get something done that's just good for chess. My only regret is that Don Schultz's efforts to pry the money that was intended for the award from the greedy little group that's keeping it have not yet succeeded.

  3. We have brought the internet into the CJA awards. There is a lot of great stuff out there, and new formats such as a chess.fm or chess cafe, among others, are challenging us to rethink what an "article" or an "interview" is or, indeed, what reporting is.

  4. We have a a regularly issued magazine with an editor ,John Hillary, who is conscientious, alert to what's going on in the chess world, and reliable.

These are all good things about our organization that have changed for the better in recent years. I am personally pleased that I helped in this process. My one real regret is that I did not get all the awards certificates to the people that earned them. It is entirely my fault and I apologize to those deserving people. If anyone has not received an awards certificate (from any year) please contact me (PTamburro@aol.com) and I will immediately send it to you.

Six years ago I accepted this position (and even VP before that) because nobody else wanted to do it. Today, my professional and personal obligations and circumstances simply do not leave room for volunteer activities, and haven't for several years. At the US Open you need to select someone else.

There are many talented people out there in our membership. The remaining officers, Selby and Randy, are such people. There are others among you, if not all of you. We need more than a few, because there is a great deal to be done:

  1. We really need a person, even if not the president, to aggressively pursue the state website webmasters, state magazines and their contributors to get them to join the CJA.

  2. We need to have a better content in our journal. It's not the editor's fault. We scarcely get any articles on how to do journalism better or critical reviews or anything. You can't edit what you don't get. The membership needs to contribute to make it a useful, professional journal. As an example, the Massachusetts site had an explanation on how to get USCF tournament crosstables for your state on disk and then put them into your magazine. That should be in our journal. Technical stuff is especially welcome.

  3. We need to think about expanding our borders--maybe starting with English language countries and invite Britain, Canada, Australia and anyone else publishing in print or on the net in English. It may seem radical to some, but we really ought to try it. Chess is transforming into a dynamic world wide community. Chess players from 56 nations have listened to my lectures on chess.fm. I get mail from England and Thailand and Eastern Europe. It has been eye-opening. It is an opportunity for us to come up with dynamic ideas and experiments to be on the cutting edge of this.

I hope that more than a few of you, my colleagues, are up to it.

Pete Tamburro
President, CJA

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