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Runoff USBGF Election

Posted By: Perry Gartner
Date: Tuesday, 18 February 2014, at 9:02 p.m.

In Response To: Runoff USBGF Election (Daniel Murphy)

Neal has made many outrageous and totally unfounded accusations, knowing full well they were untrue. Examples: He accused Karen Davis of fraud regarding our financial statements; he said the USBGF Foundation books were cooked because we deliberately falsified the nature of our income; he said that I promised that the USBGF would not use Safe Harbor Games unless they took him back after Neil was not permitted to play there because of his misconduct online, and this was his condition of becoming a founding sponsor; he said I called 3 people and told them not to attend the Ft. Lauderdale tournament. I could go on and on. He is not someone that I would want to try to reason with at this juncture.

I do not believe this forum is the appropriate venue for this discussion and am pained that it has reached the point where I feel the need to respond here. I am doing so because there are many readers of Bgonline that are not aware of the facts, and might be influenced in the election because I have not responded. I am also including a letter, below, I wrote to the board concerning the FT. Lauderdale tournament.

Further, I have made my views known about all of the issues raised concerning me and the USBGF by Neal and others, in communications with the board of the USBGF, with emails to many members of the community, and with anyone that I meet that shows an interest in any of these subjects.

In regard to the legalization efforts, the letter we sent that Neal is referring to was reviewed by legal counsel and others on our team. Our intent was in keeping with our mission, namely to popularize the game, but our execution had elements that were flawed, I do admit that, take full responsibility for it, and I and fellow board members did learn from this experience.

I believe the progress the USBGF has made since inception has been phenomenal and I am proud to have been President and a contributor to where we are today. The achievements of the USBGF during my tenure are listed in a piece I wrote with Karen Davis in the Sept-Oct. issue of Prime Time, and one just needs to navigate the site to see what we have going for us. I believe the USBGF is playing a significant role in the growth of backgammon in the U.S. and worldwide and would like to remain as part of the team.

I am not going to respond further on Bgonline to Neal or others taking up his cause on Bgonline. If anyone would like any information about my tenure as President of the USBGF please feel free to email me directly.

Here is the letter I wrote to the board and board advisors in October:

From: Perry Gartner [mailto:perry@usbgf.org] Sent: Sunday, October 27, 2013 1:02 PM To: bod@usbgf.org Cc: 'Neil Kazaross'; 'Carol Joy Cole' Subject: FT Lauderdale Tournament/Confidential


Ray Fogerlund posted on Bgonline an inaccurate and unseemly recounting of the contacts I had on behalf of the USBGF with Rick Wolf prior to the tournament. I have not responded on Bgonline because I don’t think it the appropriate forum for this subject, and do not want to be responsible for unleashing another tirade from Neal Weiner. If I had confidence that Ray would not make my response public I would send him a copy of this, but I don’t, so I won’t.

I do think it is important for you all to know the facts.

Some time ago Rick asked me if we would support the tournament. My response was yes, but he would need to be sure that Neal stopped his libelous attacks on the USBGF, its officers, and other people working on our behalf. He assured me yes he could, and would speak to Neal about this.

I offered, on our behalf, to give a 1 hour coaching session for novices, before the tournament began, and touch base with each of the novice players each day to answer questions and see how they were doing. I suggested to Rick that he place free notices of the tournaments in local papers in the Event sections with some kind of incentive, like no entry fees for first timers, to attract the Novices.

I planned to man a USBGF table there and Rick indicated our planned presence in the tournament brochure. Not very long before the tournament starting date, Neal took off again on Facebook, in an angry dressing down of our college teaching program in general and Phil Simborg in particular, saying Phil should be “shot”.

Last year in Tarpon Springs, Neal was abusive and physically threatening, so under all of these circumstances I decided to call Rick and explain why I wasn’t comfortable attending. I thought the chances were slim, but I had hoped my call would elicit a response of let me see if I can get Neal to retract what he said, and assure you that we welcome you and the USBGF.

In the meantime Bill Riles became President- Elect, and I invited him to join in my phone call to Rick. Prior to this call, Bill spoke to Neal, and Neal took off on Bill and the USBGF saying he would not accept any representative of the USBGF at the tournament, end of story.

I then called Rick, and told him that he should consider disassociating himself with Neal and his views. The response was not encouraging.

Earlier this week, I heard from Bill that he had another conversation with Neal and Neal was now going to be supportive of the USBGF. Neal then posted something along those lines in Bgonline. I think that’s wonderful as long as it lasts.

I do want to take this occasion to thank all of you for your support during the tenure of my Presidency. I hope you all will join me in doing the same for Bill.


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