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The founder of Madison City Chess League, Ranae Bartlett is retiring as the organization’s Executive Director. CONTRIBUTED

Bartlett retires as Executive Director of Madison City Chess League

MADISON – The founder and longtime proponent of Madison City Chess League or MCCL, Ranae Bartlett is retiring as the organization’s Executive Director.

“As we enter our tenth anniversary year as an organization, I have made the decision it is time to pass the torch to a new executive director for our organization who will help us plan a Tenth Anniversary Celebration, continue to host chess tournaments and camps in North Alabama and move our organization to the next level,” Bartlett said.

“Chess is growing in our area, and the MCCL Board of Directors will help select and train our next Executive Director, who hopefully can serve for the next decade,” Bartlett said.

While MCCL is conducting a search for executive director, Bartlett will continue in the interim until the board can hire a replacement.

Madison City Chess League is planning to conduct two state championship events in February, an Alabama Team Chess Championship on Feb. 4 and the All-Girls State Chess Championship on Feb. 18.

This spring, the chess league will host tournaments in Huntsville and Madison, along with assisting the American Chess Federation in conducting the State Scholastic Chess Championship in Alabaster.

In 2003, Bartlett’s family relocated to Madison from Arkansas, where she worked as Director of Risk Analysis and Security Resources and Assistant General Counsel for Walmart Stores Inc. Bartlett earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Arkansas School of Law.

After Bartlett organized MCCL, the U.S. Chess Federation recognized her with an award for serving as co-chair of the “Chess in Education” working group.

Her work led to MCCL hosting the All-Girls State Championship, one of several successful actions to recruit more females to play chess. This investment led to players competing in the All-Girls National Chess Championship in Chicago.

Bartlett served on Madison Board of Education from 2011 to 2020. She performed as the board’s vice-president and president while Madison City Schools experienced unprecedented growth in student population.

She is married to Todd Guthrie, and they have one son, Michael Guthrie, who attends the University of Alabama.

Currently, Bartlett represents District 5 as a member of Madison City Council.

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