In my campaign letter of June 7, 2013,  I said that Beatriz Marinello had disregarded the interests of USCF in pushing for the 2006 US Open to be placed in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, and presented as evidence the entire email discussion of this controversy involving Beatriz, myself, the USCF Board and Events Manager, and others.

On June 17, Leroy Dubeck of Cherry Hill posted a response on the USCF Issues Forum. It is presented below, followed by my Forum reply to Dubeck.

Bill Goichberg

lwdubeck wrote:Bill Goichberg and the 2007 US Open Held in New Jersey
As part of Mr. Goichberg’s attack on Beatriz Marinello in the current USCF Executive Board election, he objected to the New Jersey Chess Federation’s hosting of the 2007 US Open. First he complained that the decision to award the tournament was improper because it was not made by the Executive Director. He omitted telling the reader that he was the Executive Director at the time and that many thought he had a conflict of interest in making the decision. The Executive Board was correct in assigning the 2006 US Open to Chicago and the 2007 US Open to New Jersey.
As for the “high hotel rates” in 2007, Mr. Goichberg also forgot to mention that only after the 2007 US Open was completed did the New Jersey Chess Federation discover that an “Addendum” (which we had never seen) to the hotel contract was awarding 10% of all room rental fees to another organization “as agent of record to research hotel availability and negotiate a contract on behalf of the US Chess Federation.” This was a surprise to us since we were using the same hotel as in 2002. The USCF received part of the 10% “commission” but never mentioned it to us. We discovered it only because the hotel asked us where to send the rebate check! This “commission” should have been used to reduce room rates for participants. Bill Goichberg was President of USCF in 2007 and must have known about this while he criticized the high hotel rates.
In addition, for months before the2007 US Open the USCF refused to register players for the US Open and take their entry fees!!
Despite all this we had 400 entries and shared a tidy profit with the USCF.
Very Truly Yours, Dr. Leroy Dubeck, member NJSCF Organizing Committee for the 2007 US Open

    Response by Bill Goichberg:
In my campaign letter, I didn’t really address the hosting of the 2007 US Open, rather I objected to the attempt by President Marinello to interfere with the ED (myself) and place the 2006 US Open in Cherry Hill when a far better bid from the Chicago area (Oak Brook) was about to be approved. I believe that this was worse than simply a mistake by Marinello, as the Illinois bid was vastly superior to that of New Jersey; it was an action which blatantly disregarded the interests of USCF and its members. For the emails showing Marinello’s action and the resulting debate, see

Consider the major differences between the two bids:

Illinois: Hotel rate $89, with tax added $95.58, 10% commission to USCF, 1040 room nights needed to avoid rent, no food revenue required, US Open last in the area 12 years before.

New Jersey: Hotel rate $114, with tax added $131.10, no commission to USCF, 1215 room nights needed to avoid rent, $5000 food revenue required, US Open last in the area (same hotel) 4 years before. 

The room rate at all previous US Opens had always been under $100. And the last time a US Open location was repeated this quickly was in the 1940s!

Dr. Dubeck says that my letter “omitted telling the reader that he was the Executive Director at the time and that many thought he had a conflict of interest in making the decision.”

My letter does tell the reader that I was Executive Director at the time, which I identify as 2004 and document with a series of emails from that fall. In the letter I say “Beatriz was USCF President from 8/03-8/05, during a time when I was USCF Office Manager (11/03-1/04) and USCF Executive Director (1/04-12/04).” 

Regarding my having a conflict of interest, the only one who I am aware suggested that was Leroy Dubeck. He also suggested that the $114 rate was OK because it was lower than the rate at the National Scholastics, and that Chicago should be avoided because the HB Global tournament would probably be held again in Minnesota and would hurt entries! 

And Marinello said that the Oak Brook hotel was too small, even though the Chicago Open had comfortably hosted over 800 there. She referred to problems fitting everyone in at a National K-12 Championship at that hotel, and said, “I completely agree that the space is not appropriate for this event which includes our annual convention.” I responded that it must have been quite a problem for that 1200 player event, but for the US Open we didn’t even need all the hotel’s meeting space. And we didn’t. I can’t believe that her comments were sincere; it seemed like she was just determined to place the event in New Jersey.

Dr. Dubeck says, “The Executive Board was correct in assigning the 2006 US Open to Chicago and the 2007 US Open to New Jersey.” However, the Executive Board assigned neither, as the Executive Director has been assigning US Opens (and most other national tournaments) since the early 1990s.

When I was ED, the Board confirmed that one of the duties of the ED was placement of national tournaments. I worked for many months on placing the US Open in the Chicago area, and was astonished when, with the contract signing probably a few weeks away, I was suddenly told by President Marinello to sign a grossly inferior contract for Cherry Hill. I told her that I would not do so unless ordered to by the Board. She did not bring the matter to the Board and I signed the contract for the Chicago area.

Dr. Dubeck says of the 2007 US Open in Cherry Hill, “...we had 400 entries and shared a tidy profit with the USCF.” However, he fails to mention that the 2007 US Open had fewer entries than every US Open between 1999 and 2006. 

The 2006 US Open in Oak Brook, Illinois, on the other hand, had over 530 entries, the largest turnout since 1991 and one not matched since. USCF also obtained a commission of over $10,000 from the Illinois hotel, and the overall profit was much greater than other recent US Opens, including New Jersey 2007. 

After I left as Executive Director, President Marinello became acting COO in 2005 and placed the 2007 US Open in Cherry Hill. The contract she signed offered no commission on guest rooms to USCF. In August 2005 I became USCF President, and even though Dr. Dubeck says that I “must have known” that there was a commission, I did not know, nor did ED Bill Hall. Why would we know, if Beatriz did not? After the tournament was held, I was astonished to hear from Bill Hall that the hotel had asked where to send the rebate check. I am not aware that USCF had already received a payment from the hotel. It seems clear that there was nothing in the contract requiring them to pay a rebate.

Regarding using the rebate to announce lower room rates, we couldn’t do this as we didn’t know there was a rebate. I believe the rebate was about $5000, or about $4 per room night, and the 2007 room rate was $115.

Bill Goichberg
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Joined: Thu Feb 26, 2004 6:51 pm
USCFId: 10088887

2006 US Open documentation