Chess Coach recognized by the State of Alabama
By Michael Ciamarra   
October 10, 2014
MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA --- Chess coach and tournament organizer Caesar Lawrence, of Birmimgham, was recognized by the State of Alabama for his chess promotion work, coaching scholastic players and tournament organizing.

Meeting with Governor Robert Bentley, who presented a resolution of recognition from the state legislature, Lawrence said he was pleased that chess was being commended by the highest levels of state leadership.

"It was a privilege for me to meet with the governor," Lawrence said. "More important is the fact that chess is getting such publicity. Chess helps kids on so many different levels in school.  My goal is for chess to be accepted for the sport that it is."

Gov. Bentley and the Alabama Legislature have recognized the value of chess as a critical thinking, education tool.  The Alabama Chess Federation is working with the Alabama State Dept. of Education in developing a full scale Chess in the Schools Initiative.  The Office of the Governor also issues a yearly National Chess Day proclamation. 

Lawrence's scholastic chess promotion and organizing tournaments in all areas of Alabama drew the attention of Alabama's leaders.  He has brought organized chess events to counties that have never had a tournament before.

"Caesar's passion for chess coupled with his entrepreneurial spirit and persistence in the face of adversity has been a blessing to Alabama's chess community. The tournaments he organizes are the bedrock for competitive play throughout the state," Neil Dietsch, president of the Alabama Chess Federation said.

Caesar Lawrence has directed over 275 tournaments. He runs CaesarChess which organizes scholastic and adult chess tournaments throughout the year. He is a US Chess Federation Certified Chess Coach, Certified Affiliate and Alabama Chess Federation Affiliate.

Lawrence coaches public and private schools, as well as homeschool networks. Along with IM David Ross, Lawrence ran the 2014 Birmingham Chess Camp. 

When asked by Gov. Bentley what advice he gives coaching scholastic chess players, Caesar said, "Slow down, think about it, and make good decisions!" The governor smiled and said, "Elected officials can use that advice as well!"

Lawrence will direct the annual National Chess Day Scholastic, on October 11, in Birmingham. The event is held at the Brookwood Village Mall and is highly visible to the public.  Lawrence does this as a labor of love - promoting chess and with all of the proceeds going to Children's of Alabama hospital.

Senate Joint Resolution - 2014


WHEREAS, it is with highest commendation that Caesar  Lawrence, a United States Chess Federation Certified Scholastic Chess Coach and professional tournament director, is recognized for his work, results, and inspiration to children to learn and play chess; and

WHEREAS, since June 2006, Mr. Lawrence, through his programs developed at Caesar Chess, LLC, has been teaching children how to play chess, have fun, and test their skills in tournaments; and

WHEREAS, Mr. Lawrence plans, organizes, and directs chess tournaments for adult and scholastic players K-12; he also serves as After School Enrichment Coach for Birmingham and Montgomery Schools, conducts Summer Chess Camps, and travels throughout Alabama tirelessly promoting and  publicizing chess; and

WHEREAS, the venerable game of chess, which leads to a lifetime of fascination and enjoyment, has provided pleasure for millions of chess players the world over; and

WHEREAS, chess is a challenging game that contributes to enhancing the reasoning process, strengthens  cognitive skills, and improves the mental acuity of young participants; and

WHEREAS, now well established in Alabama's public and private schools, chess can improve a child's ability to concentrate, boost his or her self esteem, build lasting friendships, and lead to improved performance in the classroom; and

WHEREAS, encouraging hundreds of children to take up the game of chess, Caesar Lawrence, with his unique chess teaching programs, is providing many talented Alabama children with the knowledge and skills to become better students as well as better chess players, and he has worked diligently to increase public awareness about the value of chess in the school systems; now therefore,

BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF ALABAMA, BOTH HOUSES THEREOF CONCURRING, That Caesar Lawrence is hereby most highly honored and commended for his exemplary work as Alabama's Scholastic Chess Coach and Tournament Director, and it is directed that a copy of this resolution be provided to him in admiration and appreciation, along with best wishes for continuing success in his worthy endeavors.