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Chess experts to mentor Madison City Chess League players

Hitachi Chess Team members Russ Freeman, from top left, and Jack Harmsen prepare to face Madison City Chess League players Michael Guthrie and Constance Wang. (CONTRIBUTED)
Hitachi Chess Team members Russ Freeman, from top left, and Jack Harmsen prepare to face Madison City Chess League players Michael Guthrie and Constance Wang. (CONTRIBUTED)

MADISON – A chess expert with 42 years of teaching experience has agreed to mentor youth in the Madison City Chess League.

“We are very fortunate to have someone with Don Maddox’s illustrious chess career mentoring our students,” Ranae Bartlett said. Bartlett serves as director of the Madison league.

“This opportunity for multi-generational chess matches is wonderful and unique,” Bartlett said.

On June 11, Maddox and his Hitachi Consulting Government Solutions team hosted a five-game tournament with Huntsville Chess Club and Madison City Chess League. After the tournament, Bartlett asked and Maddox agreed for his chess club members to work with young players in this area.

Hitachi team members will help local children by hosting a series of matches against scholastic players. “The idea would be to make a significant contribution to the area’s scholastic chess community by giving kids a chance to play serious chess over the summer,” Bartlett said.

“We’re planning to do a match once a month, and Mr. Maddox plans to be a guest instructor for Madison City Chess League on selected Monday nights,” Bartlett said.

In the early 1990s, Maddox coached a small high school in New Jersey to the New Jersey State High School Championship and New Jersey State Team Chess Championship three years running. His team finished 15th in the country in the U.S. National High School Chess Team Championships for two consecutive years.

For five years, Maddox served as chess correspondent for “USA Today,” and he was editor of “Chess Life Magazine” for two years. He was president of ChessBase USA from 1990 to 2007.

Maddox was chess consultant to IBM’s “Deep Blue” team that defeated Kasparov in 1997. He was authored 13 books and training CDs for the game of chess.

Madison City Chess League meets at Hogan Family YMCA, 130 Park Square Lane on Mondays. Summer hours are 6:30 to 8 p.m.

For more information, email to rbartlett@madisoncity.k12.al.us or visit Facebook/Madison City Chess League.

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