Judy Misner Retires After Almost 52 Years


Judith (Judy) Misner, our Director of Administration, is retiring on May 27 after almost 52 years working for US Chess. She was hired on October 12, 1970, as a membership clerk and over the years has held these positions: Membership Supervisor, Membership Services Manager, Membership Director, Assistant Director, and her current position. Judy will remain with us in an independent contractor capacity for the time being.




On May 19, we held a retirement party at the Crossville, Tennessee office for Judy Misner. A number of telecommuting staff traveled in for this special event as did some former employees. Everyone wore a tie dye t-shirt in honor of Judy's favorite clothing item! In the below photo, Judy is holding two of her gifts; a quilt given to her by Korey Kormick, and a pair of Swarovski baby tortoises from US Chess, as Judy enjoys collecting turtle figurines.

Misner retirement party

 Left to right: Walter Brown, former OTB and FIDE Ratings Associate; Geoffrey Isaak, Director of Development; Korey Kormick, Technical and Ratings Manager; Carol Meyer, Executive Director; Judy Misner; Christine Green, Membership Associate; Debra Robison, Senior Accountant; Fred Robison, Events Driver and Assistant; Traci Lee, former Membership Associate; Dan Lucas, Senior Director of Strategic Communication; Boyd Reed, Director of Events. 

Some more pictures from the retirement party:

From left to right: Judy interacting with some of the people who Zoomed in for the party (which included executive board members Mike Hoffpauir, Randy Bauer, and Chuck Unruh as well as Womens Program Director Jennifer Shahade and Governance Coordinator Rose McMahon); the celebratory cake; Judy opening her gift from US Chess.

As you might imagine, Judy has appeared in a number of staff photos over the decades. The first one is from 1977 (Judy is fifth from left) ; the next one is from the early 1980s (Judy is second from left among those seated). Another staff photo appears in the video at the end of this article.


Judy told us that her favorite memory of working at US Chess was "tackling my fear of heights and attending the World Championship at the top of the World Trade Center in New York City."

Judy had previously told us about what she has learned about the value of chess: “I like the fact that chess can be rewarding on so many levels. You can take the game seriously or you can just have tons of fun by just playing the game. It makes me think about each move that I make—some are great and some not so great. However the process, I believe it’s what helps me to look at other issues of my life and makes it easier to plan better. By looking at a problem and breaking it down almost like one move at a time, it usually helps to make the particular problem not so overwhelming.

"We taught chess to a friend of ours who had many health challenges that we met in the local nursing home. We would play chess every Saturday for four years until he passed. It was truly amazing how the whole experience had positive results for him, not only for mental stimulation, but also physically. The nursing home facility noticed the difference and made sure that there were chess sets available in the recreation room as they found out that many of the residents did enjoy playing the game. So it’s not a win/loss or draw, it’s a win/win for everyone.”

Judy will now have more time to enjoy one of her favorite activities—staying home and watching stock car races on TV along with reruns of the old shows she watched growing up. She told us, "I am so grateful for all of the acquaintances, friendships and experiences that I have with so many great individuals over the years.  They will all hold a special place in my heart forever."

A number of current and former employees, past presidents, and the current president recorded some video messages for Judy: