|Ursula Foster Memorial Chess Gifts Awarded at 2006 Denker Tournament of High School Champions & 2006|
|By Joan DuBois|
|August 17, 2006|
Mrs. Foster’s sons, Rick and Cliff Lester, have announced an annual chess gift of $1,000 to be shared and awarded through the U.S. Chess Federation to the Top 13 and under winner from the Denker High School Tournament of Champions and the Susan Polgar National Invitational for Girls (currently held in conjunction with the U.S. Open), to commemorate their mother’s life and her dedication to young chess players.
Kevin Guo and Tony X. Chen tied for the Top 13 and under for the 2006 Denker Tournament of High School Champions to share the $500.00 chess gift and Jordana Williams won the $500.00 gift from the 2006 Susan Polgar National Invitational for Girls.
Mrs. Foster, a long time member of the USCF, was active in over-the-board and correspondence chess for many years. With a career-high rating of 1753, Mrs. Foster was equally skilled in quick time chess and correspondence chess which included being among the top 50 U.S. Women players.
In 1938, at 11 years old, Mrs. Foster fled
Mrs. Foster is mentioned by name in the book written by Anne Frank. Her time of hiding was fraught with danger, fear, and deprivation. It was during this time that her father taught her how to play chess. On her 16th birthday, she was confronted by two Nazi officers, and narrowly escaped imprisonment when one of the men realized she looked remarkably like his own daughter, and chose instead to walk away. Throughout her life, she kept the yellow star, inscribed with “Jood” (Jew) that she’d been forced to wear as a child.
Though a shy woman, she lent her time and experience to school children at Modesto area schools, giving talks about the Holocaust and its horrific impact on her life and those of her family and friends. She was a civic volunteer, working with the
Her sons are establishing the scholarship to continue their mother’s work and sense of civic duty, and keep alive her love of the game and devotion to young people.
The United States Chess Federation (USCF), founded in 1939, serves as the governing body for chess in the
For additional information on the USCF see: http://www.uschess.org.