Archive for the ‘News’ Category

9th Annual Chess Fest: OFF THE ROOK


Saturday, April 30th, 2016, 2PM-6PM, at Hotel Congress, 311 E. Congress St., featuring 9 Queens Player of the Year and Women’s Master Candidate Claudia Muñoz. Claudia is the 3rd Highest Rated 18-year-old female in US Chess.

This FREE family chess festival is featuring Beginner Chess Lessons – Passport Tables – Pickup Games – Arts & Crafts – Chess Puzzles – Coaches’ Corner – Human-Sized Chess board – Face Painting – DJs & More!

Additional Guests Include: Hendricks Knight Hawks, Catalina Foothills Chess Team, AZ Sessions.

Wish Come True with the Help of The Connie Hillman Foundation & Paul Gold, thank you!

Congratulations to 9 Queens Co-Founder Jean Hoffman! via Chess Life Online

Congratulations to 9 Queens Co-Founder Jean Hoffman on her new position as Executive Director of USCF!  

The US Chess Scoop goes to Parsippany for the 2014 US Amateur Team East, also known as the World Amateur team. Among the interviewees were new Executive Director Jean Hoffman, young SM Joshua Colas & Elizabeth Spiegel of Brooklyn Castle.

Kristi’s Kids Making Movings on the Chess Board


Kristi’s Kids Making Moves on the Chessboard.

Chess has been on board for over a thousand years. Jean Hoffman co-founded 9 QUEENS, right here in Tucson, about 4 years ago.

“And our goal was to create a chess program that was…made chess fun, exciting and accessible to everyone.”

Kristi’s Kids was there for one of the chess tournaments 9 QUEENS put into play at the Himmel Park Library on a Saturday morning. There is more to this game than just moving pieces around the board. Click here to watch the story.

GEEK DAD: Your Chance to Play Like a Girl

By Dave Banks  |  January 10, 2012  |  6:30 am  |

For beginners, chess is a game that centers around preserving a decidedly female (and all-powerful) piece. Still, the world of chess has long been dominated by males. But, in case you had missed it, there is a movement afoot to increase the number of women in chess. A group called 9Queens has been working the past few years to increase participation of at-risk youth and, especially, girls in the sport. It’s an admirable commitment and one that has shown promise.

Now, one of the founders of 9Queens, Jennifer Shahade, has written a book targeted specifically at girls. Play Like a Girl is a collection of tactics that young women and others can use as they develop their chess skills. Shahade, a Women’s Grandmaster, believes that women play more aggressively than men and points to Judit Polgár as example of women who attack relentlessly.

In Play Like a Girl, Shahade provides bios and brief examinations of favorite combinations and tactics of more than a dozen important women players in history, from Vera Menchik to Hou Yifan. Each tactic is followed by a number of puzzles that players can try to solve, using the tactic outlined in the player bio. (Answers are in the back if you’re stumped.) Beginner players are sure to pick up a move or two – or at least know what to look for when setting a defense.

If you have a daughter interested in chess or any kid who wants to learn more about an exciting style of play, check out Play Like a Girl — it’s both an inspiring and challenging group of puzzles. Plus, all royalties from the sale of this book are directed back to the 9Queens project to help girls and inner city youth discover and thrive in chess

9 Queens gets a makeover

After spending five years working to change the face of chess, we finally decided it was time to treat ourselves…to a total website makeover! For the past six months, we have been working with Dennis Fesenmyer from Fezlab and Ian Johnson from MoiaGroup to redesign We are thrilled to launch the new site and pretty proud of our new duds. In addition to the spiffy new design, there are a couple of features we created specifically for the 9 Queens community.


They include:

Calendar This is your place to find upcoming 9 Queens events and workshops.

Learn to Play  Features a preview of the 9 Queens passport. This soon to be released booklet is your guide to learning how to play chess quickly and painlessly.

Success Stories and Player Profiles 9 Queens chess players around the country tell us why they like chess. If you have a quote about chess and want to be featured on our website, email us!


Many thanks to Ian and Dennis for all their hard work and beautiful design. We hope you like the site as much as we do. Let us know what you think!


9 Queens: Empowerment through Chess

9 Queens is dedicated to empowering individuals and communities through chess by making the game fun, exciting, and accessible.

Player Spotlight


Varga Luna

(playing for 4 years)

“I became interested in chess when I was about four. I like chess bc you get to have fun and learn some things. You get to be more patient. You get to focus and concentrate. ”