Nominations received for
Chess Journalist of the Year (2007)

Cramer Award Category
Category 1: Chess Journalist of the Year
Nominations should be sent to the Chief Judge for the CJA with a supporting statement. This should be a person who has greatly contributed to chess journalism this past year. Only work in the past year should be considered.

Cramer Award winners will receive the traditional marble obelisk and a CJA certificate.

For a full list of CJA Awards categories see: 2007 Chess Journalists of America / Cramer Journalism Awards.

Ballots for voting by CJA members will be distributed in the June 2007 issue of The Chess Journalist.
You may also email your vote to the chief judge
. Each member may vote once. Only individuals listed in the current Membership List may vote.
No specific deadline is given, but it is recommended that your vote be received by August 1 to insure it is counted.

Heisman Hanken Lerman Riddle

Following are the statements provided by the nominators.

Note that the Award is for work done during the last year, not for their career.

Dan Heisman

Dan Heisman

  1. Dan is the columnist for Novice Nook at Chess Café ( . Novice Nook won the Cramer Award for Best Column, Any Media, in 2005 and has been running continuously since 2001, gathering other CJA awards, such as Best Instruction 3 times, including 2006. In 2006 Dan also won the CJA award for “Best Web Game Analysis” for another Novice Nook. He has already completed a 10-part column for on thought process entitled “The Thinking Cap”.
  2. Dan has an ongoing (2001-present) web radio show on ICC Chess.FM called “Ask the Renaissance Man” where listeners can submit questions on any chess subject and Dan answers the questions “real-time” on the show. The show airs live on Thursdays from 9-10 PM. A second show on Tuesdays has started, featuring interviews. This month (March 2007) the following were guests: GM Alex Baburin (Chess Today); IM Larry Kaufman, NM Larry Tamarkin, Chess Café owner Hanon Russell, Bookup’s Mike Leahy, and USCF Rating Committee chair Dr. Mark Glickman.
  3. Dan fills in on ICC Chess.FM for live broadcasts of ongoing chess events. In 2006 he broadcast a round of the US Championship and a round of the Corus international tournament as well as teaming with Rybka programmer Vas Rajlich to do a game of the Kramnik-Deep Fritz match.
  4. In 2005 Dan made a contribution to the Philadelphia Foundation ( to start the tax-deductible Dan Heisman Chess Scholarship Fund. In 2007 this fund has been changed to be a more generic “Chess Support Fund” The fund was formed to provide scholarship financing to deserving students who perform well at local scholastic events like the Greater Philadelphia Scholastic Championship (which he runs with PSCF Scholastic Coordinator Steve McLaughlin; Dan was TD and organizer for the Gr Phila MS/HS Championship in November 2006) and the Greater Philadelphia Junior Invitational. The first endowed scholarship financing is available in 2006.
  5. In the 1990’s Dan’s family started another Fund at the Philadelphia Foundation to support women in need: breast cancer, runaway teenagers, and battered wives. Every August he volunteers his time to organize and TD a charity tournament, the “Holly Heisman Memorial” fundraiser, where sponsors from all over offer prizes and the players have free entry fee, but are asked to make contributions to the Fund. In August 2006 this event was held at the JCC in Wynnewood, PA, and raised over $1,400 for women in need. To date over $10,000 has been raised for this Fund, about half thru the annual chess event.
  6. Dan has written 8 chess books. In 2004 he completed his 8th book, “Back to Basics: Tactics”, and in 2005 thru 2007 he worked with its editors towards a spring 2007 release. In early 2006 he purchased the rights to his first chess book Elements of Positional Evaluation, in late 2006 finished on a fourth edition, and hopes for a publication sometime in the future.
  7. Dan contributes to the PA State Chess Federation newsletter Pennswoodpusher on a regular basis. In his role as the SE PA Scholastic Coordinator, he often authors the Scholastic Corner column and now has a second column “Junior Gems”.
  8. Dan has an e-mail list of media contacts in the Philadelphia area, and sends out media releases for local chess events. Dan also has an extensive e-mail list of local sponsors and players and periodically notifies them of upcoming events.
  9. Dan’s website,, has 100+ pages and serves the Philadelphia area (including South Jersey and Delaware) with ongoing event calendars, club listings, Scholastic Honor Rolls, High School team rankings, the Modern Philadelphia Chess Hall of Fame, and many articles about how to get involved with the world of chess and improve your play. Dan updates all the pages as the webmaster.
  10. Dan acts as an instructional guru for and posts answers to questions from the members. He has also provided site content for Chessville. For example, he won a CJA Award for his book review of Andrew Soltis’ Re-thinking the Chess Pieces, which he reviewed for Chessville.
  11. As the Vice President of the Main Line Chess Club, Dan maintains their website and sends out a weekly club e-mail detailing club results and upcoming events. Also, Dan acts as one of the chief organizers for the main club-sponsored events such as the Greater Philadelphia Open Championship and the Greater Philadelphia Junior Invitational. He was also the TD for the latter in June 2006.
  12. Dan is a USCF Delegate from Pennsylvania and has been involved with both state and national chess organizations such as the USCF Ratings and Rules Committees (not as a formal member) and has won a past CJA award for an Editorial on national tournament participation.
  13. In 2005 and 2006 Dan acted in an advisory position for a ground-breaking international Gothic Chess match between Anatoly Karpov and Bobby Fischer, was was hopefully to be held in late 2006. Not surprisingly, Karpov agreed to the multi-million dollar offer but Fischer was recalcitrant.
  14. Dan holds the title of National Master and his FIDE rating of 2285 was awarded the FIDE “CM” title in 2007. He has been the Open (twice) and Invitational Champion of Philadelphia and played on the Penn State team that won the 1972 US Amateur Team Championship. He helped get his Penn State coach and US Amateur teammate Donald Byrne elected to the US Chess Hall of Fame and still keeps in touch with Don’s widow, Madge Byrne.
  15. Dan has been a member of the CJA as far back as the 1970’s, when he won the award for Best Local Column for his work in the Bucks County Courier Times.
  16. Dan has been petitioning the US Chess Federation to try to create group liability insurance for organizers. He feels that by providing group coverage it would lower both the cost and the risk of running chess events, especially for “amateur” organizers. So far this crucial issue has not been seriously addressed, but Dan continues to work on it, hoping that it will become reality before a serious lawsuit discourages further organization.
  17. In 2006 Dan started instructing famous radio host Howard Stern. In Howard’s first ICC standard game he lost to a 700 player but in early 2007 has raised his rating to over 1500. Along the way Howard has been giving him journalism tips.
Jerry Hanken
Jerry Hanken

Jerry Hanken

Jerry Hanken is a working journalist. His tournament reports for Chess Life have become an integral part of the "new look" to our national publication. His interviews with class winners are entertaining and informative, adding another element to each tournament report. Most notable was his interview with Justin Sarkar.

He has expanded his horizons to include expanded tournament reports for Chess Life On Line, and interviews and analysis for Chess Life for Kids.

His enthusiasm, while serving as president of the Chess Journalists of America (CJA), has resulted in a marked increase in CJA membership and an increased interest in the annual CJA awards.

Harvey Lerman
Harvey Lerman

Harvey Lerman

Harvey Lerman is the editor of Florida Chess magazine, winner of a number of CJA Awards.

This year's accomplishments, are certainly enough to garner this category award. As in most years he was published in CHESS LIFE magazine, as well as additional articles for Chess Life On Line.

As we look at the man's accomplishments for this most recent year, let us also take a look back to see how he got to the here and now. We can only fully appreciate Harvey's ability if we look at his well rounded background. The scope of his work in so many aspects of chess has always fed into his work as a chess journalist, making him the very knowledgeable and personable chess interviewer and writer he is today!

Harvey has been a USCF National Tournament Director for many years. He has directed in several hundred tournaments from Florida to the World Open, to being a co-organizer of the U.S. Open. He has been Editor of Florida Chess for a record 15 years. He also edited a wonderful scholastics magazine for many years called Skittles. This year and other years he has done much work with scholastic chess in schools. e.g. see

Lerman's work has been steady. He has been FCA Vice president for more than 10 years and a great facilitator of many different projects.

As a long time CJA member, Lerman has always been a noble ambassador of chess, bringing high viability of chess to other groups of people. He has been our ambassador as he has served his community on the city advisory board and his other positions in the community and the history of the U.S. Space Program.

His position on the city advisory board and other community work continue into this year.

His computer background (he was a computer operator tech for the early Apollo Space moon missions for NASA) enabled him to write code for a program playing the game of Conquest. Which is a game resembling chess played on a map. It was featured in OMNI magazine in 1984. Indeed, in the 80's he was crowned the World's Best Conquest player! (see: )

It is for all of this leading up and into this year, as a chess journalist; he has simultaneously been a wonderful ambassador for our chess community.

Ira Lee Riddle

Ira Lee Riddle

Ira Lee Riddle is nominated for journalist of the year.

  1. extensive rewrite of the CJA constitution and by-laws;
  2. editing/publishing as a volunteer the Delaware Chess Newsletter, while not even being a resident of that state;
  3. reviewing books as part of the DCN;
  4. never having missed a deadline for publishing or submitting an article!

Mig Greengard

Mig Greengard

Mig Greengard is nominated for journalist of the year.

Maintains a standard of excellence in daily weblog covering major national and international tournaments and other developments affecting topflight chess. Elicits generally topical and civilized comments and discussion by his readers. Provides audio commentary for live on-line coverage of major chess events on Chess.FM, elicting commentary from guest chess masters.

[You can check out Mig's current work at his web site Chess Ninja and The Daily Dirt Chess Blog. -- Webmaster]


This Page Last Updated on 7 June 2007

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