19 March 2021

The U.S. Chess Awards

Last week in U.S. Chess Cities of the Year (March 2021), I explained,

The award for 'Chess City of the Year' is one of many awards made annually by the U.S. Chess Federation. I covered these a few years back in The USCF Awards (May 2015), where I collected the awards issued up to that time in a database. For this current post I dragged that database out of cold storage, then added the awards made since 2015.

I started to wonder how many different awards have been made through the years. It turns out that there have been 25, shown in the following chart, of which 20 awards were made in 2020.

That first line should read 'ACCESSIBILITY AND SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES PERSON OF THE YEAR', but I ran out of space. The second column shows the number of times an award has been made. The third and fourth columns show the first and last years each award was made, where my data stops at the year 2020. The 'ACCESSIBILITY' award, first made in 2018, is therefore the newest of the 25 awards.

Also worth noting: the U.S. federation used to give 'JOURNALIST' awards -- 'JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR AWARD' and 'THE GALLERY OF DISTINGUISHED CHESS JOURNALISTS' -- but these stopped several years ago, perhaps because they duplicated the CJA awards (last seen on this blog in 2020 CJA Awards - Part 2, October 2020). The list of 'U.S. CHESS HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES' stops in 2014, but these awards have continued up to the present. I imagine they are not made at the same time as the other awards and therefore not included in the annual group announcement.

The post mentioned above, USCF Awards (May 2015), listed the 'KOLTANOWSKI AWARDS' through 2015. If I have the time and the energy, I'll take a closer look at some of the other most prestigious awards. Their winners represent the 'Who's Who' of organized U.S. chess.

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