District Director's Report
March 2009 ( Rich DeMartino)

Houston NABC

The Spring NABC was held at the Hilton Americas in Houston, Texas. Attendance was 9,729 tables, which is about 6% lower than pre-tournament estimates. The playing space was all under one roof and most players thought that both the hotel and the playing conditions were excellent. There were numerous good places to eat, either within walking distance of the hotel, or reachable via a free shuttle.

The local committee did a wonderful job on all aspects of the tournament and provided excellent hospitality and entertainment every evening. Unfortunately, fewer District 25 members than usual attended this NABC, most likely due to the poor economy. Congratulations to all the players listed below, especially the three who won NABC events.

Top 10 Finishers in NABC Events - District 25

NORTH AMERICAN PAIRS - A

Mel Marcus, Waltham MA
6
Luke Gillespie, Wayland MA

NORTH AMERICAN PAIRS - B

Lewis Gamerman, Brookline MA
1
Robert McCaw, Sudbury MA

SILVER RIBBON PAIRS

Richard Budd, Portland ME
10
Simon Kantor, Agawam MA

MIXED PAIRS

Ivanie Yeo, Brighton MA
8
Lon Sunshine, Framingham MA

RED RIBBON PAIRS

Lewis Gamerman, Brookline MA
8
Robert McCaw, Sudbury MA

WOMEN'S SWISS TEAMS

Phyllis Fireman, Chestnut Hill MA
1

Highlights of ACBL Board Meeting

CEO Report

CEO Jay Baum reported that membership increased by almost 1,000 members in 2008. This increase, coupled with an increase of 431 members for the first two months of 2009, brings our total membership to 159,500 members. In view of the dismal state of the economy, I believe this is a great result. The CEO also reported that we are off to a good start on the number of tournament tables in 2009. How the economy will affect future tables is difficult to predict.

Financial Results

For calendar year 2008, the ACBL reported an excess of revenues over expenses of about $890,000, which is higher than the forecast made in late November in Boston by slightly over $200,000. Although this result is quite good, several members of the Finance Committee continue to believe we need to improve our performance in forecasting results.

Hall of Fame

Mark Lair was elected to the Hall of Fame by the voters. Goodwill Committee Chair Eileen Osofsky was chosen for the Blackwood Award for individuals who have made major contributions to bridge in an administrative capacity; and Agnes Gordon, one of the great deceased players of the past, was chosen for the von Zedtwitz award.

Stratified Pair Events

A motion was passed that permits stratified pair events at local sectional and regional tournaments to be based on the average masterpoints for the pair, at the option of the sponsor. As most of you know, using average masterpoints for stratified Swiss team games is already an option. My opinion is that the Board will find a way to expand the concept to stratiflighted pair and team events sometime in the near future.

Platinum Pairs

The Platinum Pairs was established as an annual event to be held at the Spring NABC, starting in 2010. The event will start on the first Friday and will be a six-session qualification pair event open to members who: (i) have won 50 or more platinum points in the three calendar years prior to the event; or (ii) have 200 platinum points lifetime; or (iii) have attained the rank of Platinum Life Master or Grand Life Master.

The event will begin on the same day as the Silodor Open Pairs. The Vanderbilt will start on Monday instead of Sunday, which will have a negative impact on the Mixed Pairs. The Board of Governors voted to request that the Board reconsider the schedule changes resulting from this motion. I'd appreciate hearing any feedback you may have both on Platinum Pairs event itself and on the resulting schedule changes.

For complete detail on Board actions, please refer to the minutes of the Board meeting on the ACBL website (ACBL.org). These will be posted within the next two weeks.

Top 25 Masterpoint Winners Houston NABC

   
Name
Total Points
Points Won in
NABC+ Events
1.
  Lewis Gamerman, Brookline MA
116.33
16.94
2.
  Robert McCaw, Sudbury MA
113.69
16.94
3.
  Doug Doub, W Hartford CT
88.00
88.00
4.
  Phyllis Fireman, Chestnut Hill MA
82.80
80.83
5.
  Lloyd Arvedon, Bedford MA
75.14
25.12
6.
  Rich DeMartino, Riverside CT
64.65
45.63
7.
  Simon Kantor, Agawam MA
58.26
51.09
8.
  John Stiefel, Wethersfield CT
55.01
40.15
9.
  Pat McDevitt, Brookline MA
54.96
15.15
10.
  Nathan Glasser, Somerville MA
54.00
3.28
11.
  Ivanie Yeo, Brighton MA
53.25
30.77
  Lon Sunshine, Framingham MA
53.25
30.77
13.
  Melvin Marcus, Waltham MA
48.85
48.85
14.
  Frank Mastrola, Swansea MA
44.39
17.99
15.
  Judith Inker, Wellesley Hills MA
43.97
16.
  Stephen Gladyszak, Chelsea MA
39.23
16.45
17.
  Bud Biswas, Lexington MA
39.12
5.39
18.
  Brenda Montague, Swampscott MA
38.37
11.97
19.
  Anton Tsypkin, Sharon MA
35.20
7.91
20.
  Richard Budd, Portland ME
33.29
26.67
21.
  Yiji Starr, Waltham MA
32.66
10.26
22.
  David Pimental, Dartmouth MA
32.61
  Marcia White, Lakeville MA
32.61
24.
  Kamla Chawla, Longmeadow MA
32.39
32.39
25.
  Luke Gillespie, Wayland MA
32.07
32.07

The Summer NABC will be held from July 23 through August 2 at the Marriott Wardman Park hotel in Washington DC. Despite the summer heat, previous Washington NABCs have been among the most popular for New England players. I know that I have attended every Washington NABC since my college days and have always been impressed with the great hospitality and playing site. I assure you the local volunteers will put on a super show, as they always do, so please plan to come and enjoy the fun.

Rich DeMartino
District Director