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Old July 31st 08, 06:15 PM posted to,,alt.chess,,
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Default Reasons for the Petition to Recall Bill Goichberg from the USCFExecutive Board

Reasons for the Petition to Recall Bill Goichberg from the USCF
Executive Board

To the USCF Delegates and Alternates:

Nobody campaigned harder than I did to make Bill Goichberg the USCF
President. Goichberg wanted to be USCF President for many decades and
I felt that he deserved the chance. However, now, Bill Goichberg has
been USCF President for three years. In every year of those three
years, the USCF has suffered serious financial loses, even after
juggling the books to make the losses seem to be less than they really
were. Bill Goichberg is unwilling to take the steps that need to be
taken to stop these horrific losses which are, number one, to cut
staff. Rather than cutting staff, Bill Goichberg wants to cut on
printing Chess Life magazine and Chess Life for Kids magazine. He even
wants to stop sending membership cards to the members and he wants to
stop selling life memberships.

This year, the Goichberg Board is reporting a loss of “only $73,000”.
However, the loss in real money is $258,000, one of the biggest losses
ever. To get the number down to “only $73,000” the board and the
accountants are ignoring the cap of $50,000 the delegates voted last
year to place on the “imaginary money” the USCF is theoretically
supposed to receive to service the life members but does not actually
get. They are also including as an “account receivable” money they are
claiming is owed by Hanon Russell but which Hanon Russell disputes and
has no intention of paying.

Now, Goichberg is claiming that the USCF is losing all of this money,
not because of his mismanagement, but because of competition from the
Internet. Goichberg has a solution. Just phase out the printing and
mailing of Chess Life and Chess Life for Kids magazines and there will
no longer be competition for the Internet. Everything will be OK after
these simple steps are taken, says Goichberg!

There has been a tremendous outcry from the long established members
of the USCF against these changes proposed by Bill Goichberg. Yet,
Goichberg will not listen. The Executive Board voted 6-0 without any
significant discussion or debate to adopt the Goichberg “New Plan”.
However, in view of the tremendous outcry of protest, some of the
board members are starting to get cold feet, but not Bill Goichberg.
Goichberg is ignoring all warnings and is going forward full speed
ahead with his plans. He is supported by Board Member Randy Bauer, who
is even more radical than Bill Goichberg. Bauer wants to scrap the
printing of Chess Life and Chess Life for Kids immediately, without
further ado.

The Goichberg “New Plan” will come to a vote at the USCF Delegates
meeting in Dallas on August 9-10, 2008. Do not think that it is a
simple matter of defeating this motion and all will be sweetness and
light thereafter. Goichberg is known for his persistence. He will try
again and again. I have seen this happen many times. If the delegates
vote this down, at the first meeting of the board which takes place
immediately after the delegate's meeting, he will propose the same
things again, this time labeling it as a “promotion”. Perhaps you are
not familiar with these “promotions”. The by-laws wisely give the
delegates the exclusive power to set the dues. The Executive Board
cannot change the dues. However, the Executive Board or the Executive
Director on his own can offer promotions. Goichberg has used this
loophole in the by-laws to offer promotions to move the dues up or
down as he sees fit. Thus, the by-laws have become a dead letter.

Goichberg says that his plan to turn Chess Life and Chess Life for
Kids into online publications will “save” the USCF $86,000. However,
Hanon Russell, who owns USCF Sales which he bought from the USCF in an
outsourcing deal and who has signed a contract under which he is to
pay the USCF $150,000 per year and which gives him the right to
publish ads in Chess Life and Chess Life for Kids magazines, has
written two letters to Bill Goichberg stating that he considers the
“New Plan”, if implemented, to be a breach of his contract with the
USCF. Translation: If the delegates approve the Goichberg plan on
August 9-10, 2008, the USCF can no longer expect to receive the
$150,000 per year it receives from Hanon Russell. Thus, the supposed
“savings” will be more than wiped out.

I have known Bill Goichberg since 1961 and everybody who knows him
agrees: Once Bill Goichberg has an idea in his head, he will never
back down, he will never change it. Trying to convince Bill Goichberg
that he is wrong is just a waste of time. Thus, the only course left
open is a recall petition.

I am aware of the risks of a recall petition. The number one risk is
that Goichberg has a lot of enemies, and some of his enemies are even
worse than Goichberg is. There are certain people out there who are
truly bad, evil people who would like to get their hands on the USCF
and the $3.2 million in annual revenues that the USCF receives.
Goichberg may be misguided, but he is not malicious. Goichberg really
does not want to harm the USCF. He just has poor judgment. There are
those who really do want to harm the USCF and there is a significant
danger that a recall of Goichberg will deliver the USCF into their

In spite of this significant risk, I believe that a recall of
Goichberg is required and should proceed. The reason is that the USCF
will not survive the Goichberg plan. Goichberg first became USCF Vice-
President in the 1996 USCF Election. For most of the years since 1996,
Goichberg has held the positions of either President, Vice-President
or Executive Director. During that time, the USCF has lost more than
two million dollars, whereas up to 1996 the USCF was highly
profitable. I am not blaming Goichberg entirely for the $2 million in
losses. Certainly not. Many people should share that blame. However,
the fiscal year ended on May 31, 2008 and the USCF racked up another 6-
figure loss. Rather than taking appropriate steps like cutting staff
and expenses, Goichberg wants to cut the magazines and the membership

The USCF cannot survive another year of a Goichberg presidency. His
term of office ends in August, 2009 and it is certain that he will run
for another four-year term. (There used to be a rule that the USCF
President could not succeed himself, but all such rules were abolished
in 1999). It is certain that there will be a tremendous effort to stop
Goichberg from being re-elected in 2009, but that will cost a lot of
time and money with no assurance of success.

Thus, what needs to be done is a petition to recall Bill Goichberg. It
needs to be started now. This is necessary to save the USCF from
financial ruin.

I am not the right person to start this recall campaign. Therefore, I
have asked others to come forward to form a committee to accomplish
this. I do believe that this recall campaign will ultimately be
successful and that Goichberg will ultimately be thrown out, but
somebody has to start it.

Very Truly Yours,

Sam Sloan
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Old August 1st 08, 07:47 AM posted to,,alt.chess,,
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First recorded activity by ChessBanter: May 2006
Posts: 14,870
Default Reasons for the Petition to Recall Bill Goichberg from the USCFExecutive Board

There is a new development about this over on Susan Polgar's Chess
Discussion group:

Letters have been posted from Hanon Russell to Bill Goichberg and Bill
Hall. The letters state that the USCF is carrying on its financial
statement an $85,000 accounts receivable from Hanon Russell. However,
Hanon Russell states "we dispute and deny liability for any alleged
amount owed other than the $14,000" he previously agreed to pay off in
monthly installments of $1000 per month.

Hanon Russell also states, "Finally, there are the matters of the
possible claims related to the House of Staunton and Chess Life
(reduced circulation) matters."

This refers to the Bill Goichberg plan under which Regular Adult and
Regular Scholastic USCF will no longer receive a printed copy of Chess
Life magazine. Instead they will receive a password to enable them to
read it online. Russell has indicated that because of the "reduced
circulation" he will stop paying the $150,000 per year, amount he
agreed to pay for his monthly ads in Chess Life magazine.

Finally, the reason the reported loss by the USCF for the 2007-2008
fiscal year changed from $53,000 to $73,000 is the USCF agreed with
the auditors to take Hanon Russell to arbitration over the $85,000 it
is claiming from Hanon Russell, and has put $20,000 of that amount
into a "Reserve for Bad Debts". This seems quite generous. The history
of Hanon Russell is that once he says that he is not going to pay,
then he is not going to pay. How will the USCF enforce an arbitration
aware even in the unlikely event that it wins against Hanon Russell?

The fact that this confidential information appears on Susan Polgar's
Discussion Group probably explains why the USCF started legal
proceedings against Polgar and Truong in Lubbock Texas on Monday, July
28 for "leaking confidential emails".

Sam Sloan
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