David Penkalski

David Penkalski
Dave Penkalski

David Penkalski (born 1962) USCF Chess Senior Chess Master and Life Master, rated 2414, U.S. Open Blitz chess Champion (1994) and in the top fifty Professional American chess players in 2000,[1] as well as the Wisconsin State Champion (1991),[2] Badger Open Winner (29th),[3] and Milwaukee City Champion. He has beat such notables as FIDE Master Michael A. Brooks, Master Roman Levit, and Master Curt Brasket and drew against Grandmaster Arthur Bisguier and FIDE Master Albert Chow.[4] Currently, he is an instructor at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee,[5] teaching "Chess: Focus on Strategy, Focus on Tactics." SPT&REC-289.

He continues to give private lessons to very select students, and counted among his former students is National Master Ashish Vaja. Also, you can occasionally find him playing coffee-house chess around the city of Milwaukee, giving simuls[6] and headlining Milwaukee local street festivals such as the Brady Street Masters Tournament.[7]

Senior Master Penkalski also was an instructor at the Whitewater Instructional Summer Chess Camp in Wisconsin. Other notables to teach at the week long Wisconsin summer camp are IM Silman, IM Kaidanov, IM Gurevich, GM Zsófia Polgár, and GM Yasser Seirawan.

He is a proponent of "Fischer Random Chess" or chess960, a chess variant that randomizes the initial placement of pieces on the first rank. This variant can be played on most internet chess servers. It was created by the former World Chess Champion (1972–1975) Bobby Fischer to eliminate chess opening "book knowledge." However, his favorite chess opening (like Bobby Fischer) is the King's Gambit.

In 2001, with Richard Lambrecht, Expert Tom Mertins and Xhelal Dema; he attempted to restart a Wisconsin chess newsletter called "Wiz Chess" after "Badger Chess" went defunct.[8] Only nine issues were printed and mailed. It is believed to be the first publication in which a regular column (Penkalski's, The King is Wild) was devoted completely to Chess960.

In 2002, the Wiz Chess newsletter held a Chess960 Tournament, assumed to be the first one in Wisconsin. SM David Penkalski and Expert Scott Schneider were the Tournament Directors. During each round, a single position was randomized and all participants played the same initial placement of the pieces. It is now his opinion that each board should receive its very own initial placement, however, this is untested under tournament conditions.

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