American Go E-Journal

AGA Board Candidate Profiles: Central Region

Tuesday July 24, 2012

Ten candidates are running for four seats on the AGA’s Board of Directors in this year’s elections, which are now underway. To give members a better sense of who the candidates are, their experience and vision for the AGA, the E-Journal asked all ten to respond to a brief survey and are publishing the results in a 4-part series this week. Click here for full election details, including candidate statements in their own words.

Central Region

Bob Barber lives in Chicago, IL. He’s been playing go for 30 years. His favorite thing about the game is “All the wonderful people I’ve met. I play in three clubs in Chicago. Wherever I’ve traveled: Japan, China, England, Ireland, France, I’ve made friends instantly over the go board.”

Barber, a AGA 1-kyu, started, with Shai Simonson, the Go Club at UIC, has directed more than 70 tournaments in Chicago, was a Board member for two years and conducts local outreach for the annual Japan Fest, Anime Central.

He says the AGA’s greatest strength is “Formally bringing together so many interesting players. Decades ago, it was mostly adult men. Now, we have so many women and children. Wonderful.” As far as what the AGA most needs to improve, Barber says “We badly need some corporate sponsorship.”

His top 3 priorities if elected to the Board would be seeking corporate sponsorship, safely launching the American Pro Program and finding Congress sites for years to come.

Lisa Scott lives in Chicago, IL. She’s been playing go 6 ½ years and is an AGA 1-kyu. Her favorite thing about the game is that she enjoys the competition, “and the opportunity that it gives me to meet people around the country and the world.”

Scott’s experience as a go organizer includes taking over the Hopkins Go Club in Baltimore a year and a half after she started playing go. “I was the president of the club for 2 years, and served in an advisory capacity for an additional year after I graduated (and still advise on some subjects).” At the 2007 US Go Congress, also a year and a half after she started playing, Scott was asked to run the rejuvenated Women’s Tournament. “I continued to run this tournament through 2010, and will take it over again this year. In 2009, I served as the Deputy Registrar and Asst. Pro Coordinator for the US Go Congress at George Mason University, and volunteered to run the 2011 US Go Congress, which I ran in Santa Barbaralast summer after two full years of planning. In 2010, I ran for the AGA Board of Directors because I wanted to make a difference, and was very happy to be elected and to be given the chance to represent the Central Region. In the last two years, I have also helped support the UChicago Go Club, and have participated in many local tournaments, while also advising clubs throughout the Central Region.” Other relevant organizational experience: “After serving as a Teacher’s Assistant at the Summer atBarstowcamp for 7 years, in August 2007 I became Asst. Director of the camp. In this capacity, I managed the day-to-day affairs of the camp throughout the summer, provided childcare and simple nursing services, and assisted theCampDirectorin the long-range planning of the camp.”

Scott says the AGA’s greatest strength is “the excitement of its young players and volunteers. The potential to combine these peoples’ youth and ability to adapt with the wisdom and experience of its older members places the AGA on the verge of some really exciting developments.” As far as what the AGA most needs to improve, Scott says that “I think that the AGA needs to be more responsive to the membership. I do not believe that anyone is purposefully ignored, but rather that it is not regular practice to proactively contact members to solicit their opinions and needs. We have been working on this, but we still have a long way to go.”

If re-elected, Scott’s top three priorities would be: 1) Contacting member chapters once every 6 months. 2) Working with chapters and members to come up with realistic plans for increased services. 3) Systematizing, professionalizing, and modernizing much of the way the AGA conducts business. “I look forward to being able to serve the U.S.go community in whatever ways they would have me serve,” Scott adds.  

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