District 2: Goodwill & Charity Committee Members

Goodwill Committee:

These appointments recognize players in District 2 whose conduct both at the bridge table and away from the bridge table is commendable; who promote bridge as an activity among new players, at club and unit games as well as at tournaments and who contribute to a playing environment at these venues that is conducive to fun and learning. Following are the 2016 appointments.

Andy Risman, Toronto, ON
Andy Risman, Toronto, ON

Born and raised Torontonian.  Youngest of family of six.  Post graduate education at York University.  I went into the accounting profession.  Started working for a small firm and branched off on my own after a few years.  Life was just essentially work when I decided to take up bridge.  My choice of hobbies was based on my love of cards, above average memory and logical mind.

I started out just playing once or twice a week at the local club.  First major turning point is when my father passed away and I convinced my mother to play with me (played regularly from March 1996 to February 2003 at least once a week).  She taught me my greatest lesson – that winning is nowhere near as important in making sure that everyone enjoys the game.

Next major turning point is when I joined a group of players who were at my skill level.  They met once a week to ‘train’ to play in tournaments.  Eventually some of them asked me to fill in on a team when one teammate couldn’t make the last round (I had no masterpoints so I was eligible).  Even thought we were CRUSHED, I was hooked.  I joined the ACBL.  I started to go to more and more tournaments including a few times a year I would take a trip with some of my friends to see sights and play in out of country/province regionals and NABCS.  I also started playing more and more often at the clubs.

These experiences have allowed me to make great friends, travel and even develop some business contacts.  I have joined Unit 166 board as treasurer.  They were happy enough with my work that I was recommend to join the NABC committee in the same committee. During my Friday night games at Cavendish, I was asked to join the executive committee.  I have acted in the role of club manager, vice president, treasurer and now I run the club with Richard Sayers.  I hope I have learned my mother’s lessons well and given back to the game that has given so much to me.


Jed Drew, Tillsonburg, ON
Jed Drew, Tillsonburg, ON

My wife and I have lived in over a dozen communities in five different provinces over the last 48 years as I pursued a career in the railway industry.  As well, I have worked internationally in seven different countries. Being so involved with a career and the time constraints with working and raising a family, I forgot the little bit of bridge that I had learned while in university. But, when we moved to Tillsonburg in 2003, supposedly to retire (not very successful until the third attempt in 2015), I decided I needed a hobby.  I had learned how to play bridge as a teenager, but had played so little since then I had forgotten almost everything I knew. So, I began beginner’s bridge lessons to learn again from scratch.  I was fascinated by the game and went directly from beginner’s lessons into regular club play and joined the ACBL.  Within a few months I started playing in tournaments.

I am a currently member of the Tillsonburg, St. Thomas and Simcoe Bridge Clubs, having served on club, Unit 249 and District 2 Boards of Directors since 2012. Additionally, I am an ACBL accredited club director and teacher.

The highlights of my bridge career have been representing District 2 in the Grand National Teams (C Flight) in 2007, and being appointed to the ACBL Goodwill Committee earlier this year. With the help and guidance of a number of talented and forgiving partners over the years, I have attained the rank of Ruby Life Master.

My goal is to enable the growth of bridge while respecting that we need to provide a wide range of events for players at all levels to enjoy the game. My specific interests are in fostering good sportsmanship and the development and encouragement of new players.

Chris Chambers, Thornhill, ON
Chris Chambers, Thornhill, ON

I grew up in Jamaica and came to Canada in 1976 with my wife and two sons. My introduction to bridge was from my parents who played social bridge every Friday night. They never encouraged me to learn ,and I started playing bridge when a colleague at IBM Jamaica suggested it as a way to pass the lunchtime break. That developed into our own Friday night game, a great way to spend time with friends and even see the sun rise on Saturday morning. A few of us attended a duplicate session at a club but I remember being clueless about what was going on.

Bridge was sidelined for a few years after coming to Canada. A colleague at IBM Canada introduced me to duplicate and I was hooked. We played once a week in club games and went to tournaments that were within a few hours driving time. After retirement, my bridge games increased to a two or three evening games per week, and that has changed to primarily daytime games.

Hopefully my personality and natural inclinations have been reflected at the bridge table by showing respect for my partners and opponents, even under challenging circumstances. I have tried to have a calming effect when the situation appears to be getting out of hand.

My bridge goals are to continue playing for many more years while continuing to develop my bridge skills and knowledge, and to help make every game an enjoyable experience for everyone.

Charity Committee:

Members of the ACBL Charity Committee endeavor to promote ACBL Charity Program participation in the units and sanctioned club games of their respective districts. Each District Director appoints 2 members annually to this committee.  District 2’s 2016 appointments are:

David Halasi, York, ON
David Halasi, York, ON

David has been playing bridge for almost 25 years, with success at the local and national levels. He has also volunteered on the Unit 166 board of directors since 2010, and has held various positions on the Unit and District executive board. He was a tournament director and still directs at the club level, while chairing sectional and regional tournaments in Toronto.

When not involved in the bridge world, he balances his work as a professional accountant with the experience of watching his children grow. He enjoys attending farmers markets with his family, and travelling to new destinations.

 

 

 

 

Marlene Pontifex, Winnipeg, MB
Marlene Pontifex, Winnipeg, MB

Marlene’s bio to follow.