ICCF Champions League
First Season (2004-2006)
CL Support Team

ICCF Home Page


Champions League Home Page

Meet the administrators, tournament directors, webmasters and technical experts who make the Champions League function. Following are photos and short descriptions provided by our support staff.

Chris Lers (GER)
Valer Eugen Demian (CAN)
Rudolf Hofer (AUT)
J. Franklin Campbell (USA)
Assistant Webmaster & TD
Raymond Boger (NOR)
Consultant & TD
Frank Goebert (USA)
Tournament Directors
Frank Geider (FRA)
Tom Mirbach (GER)
Thomas Schmelz (GER)
Gino Figlio (USA)
Laurent Tinture (FRA)

Chris Lers (GER) - Founder

Chris Lers (25 at the beginning of this event) lives in Cologne, Germany. In 2001 he invented and started the ICCF Champions League which soon became the largest and most popular team tournament in the world of CC. Chris served as the ICCF World Tournament Director and supervised all ICCF tournaments with, of course, a particular and special eye on the CL. :) Chris also maintained the websites of the ICCF Executive Board. Even though he resigned as WTD in December 2004, his legacy will live forever!

Chris Lers (on left) with
Danish delegate Sren Peschardt (DEN)
at the 2002 Seixal ICCF Congress

Valer Eugen Demian (CAN) - Non-Title Tournaments Commissioner

Eugen lives in Vancouver, beautiful British Columbia, Canada. Between family life, work, community work, chess lessons, his crazy chess games and TD assignments, he has been given in 2003 the opportunity to improve ICCF Non-Title tournaments. That's a long way since 1974 when he started CC carefully guided by his father ICCF-IM Valer Vasile Demian (Romania), and hopefully there's much more ahead.

"As a member of the ICCF-CL Support team it is my goal to offer another top notch competition to my fellow CC friends. Hope it will rub it in on my play as well"

My family consists of:
Felicia - her hobby is singing
Mike (Mihai) D. - plays one tournament a year (organized by his father) and loves the Dragon!
Michael (Mihai) C. - his hobby is artistic drawing

Email: Eugen Demian




Rudolf Hofer (AUT) - Administrator

I'm 39 years old. Married since 1986. I have two children, one boy and one girl. We live in Vienna. My work : Service manager in a car mechanic shop. I have played correspondence chess regularly since 1996. My current rating is 2427. Since 2000 I have been a TD in Austria. In the ICCF I'm the Email-Jubilee-Administrator since some time before the quarterfinal was started. My other hobby is football referee.

Email: Rudolf Hofer

J. Franklin Campbell (USA) - Webmaster

I have been playing chess for 45 years and cc for 40 years. My degree is in mathematics and I studied celestial mechanics at Yale Observatory. I've been married to Anne since 1969, one daughter Meg and two grandchildren (my family web site is http://www.jfcampbell.us/hazel/hazel.htm).

I have worked as a software engineer, systems engineer and systems programmer. I am currently retired, due to health and a bad economy. Besides chess my hobbies are photography and astronomy. I have maintained my personal web site The Campbell Report since 1998 and was webmaster for the ICCF-U.S. national federation site, which received the "Friend of ICCF" award for 2003. I still serve the USA as games/crosstables archivist. I am also webmaster for Chess Journalists of America and APCT. I have served ICCF as Press Officer 1999-2000, served on the webserver commission, took over the CL webmaster job in 2003 when Klaus Wrba was unable to continue, and have directed several tournaments, including the 4th NAPZ Championship and the 4th Pacific Area Team Tournament. My proudest moments in OTB were winning the Kansas State Championship tournament in 1967 and being official match photographer for the Nigel Short-Lev Alburt match in 1985. I received the International Arbiter title at the 2004 ICCF Congress in Mumbai, India.

Email: Franklin Campbell

The webmaster reveals
his secret identity!

With WC V and X
Berliner & Palciauskas

Raymond Boger (NOR) - Assistant Webmaster & TD (all server groups)

GM Raymond Boger earned his GM title in 2003 and has finished almost 200 ICCF games. He maintains a personal web site Raymond Boger Chess Web where you can see his complete set of playing title certificates (IM, SIM, GM), photographs, games (replayed using a Java aplet) and crosstables. Raymond also serves ICCF as both webmaster and editor of its e-zine ICCF Amici.

Email: Raymond Boger

Frank Goebert (USA) - Consultant/Technical Expert

In 1966, I was born in a little town (Arnsberg) in the German region called Sauerland. The next biggest city is Dortmund, where my favorite soccer team comes from. Today, I live together with my wife and two kids (son and daughter) at the US east coast, close the Philadelphia in Pennsylvania. I work as an IT specialist for a pharmaceutical company in the area managing projects and supporting its global supply chain and manufacturing processes.

I learned the moves at the age of 6, when I developed an interest in chess by just following the chess column in our TV magazine. Soon, I started (trying) to solve the chess problems posted in the weekly magazine and played the game of the week on my own chessboard. Unfortunately, I was born a little bit too late for the great Fischer-Spassky match. but in 1975 and 1978, I followed the Karpov-Korchnoi matches very closely, and that is also the time when I joined a local chess club. I soon got better and better, and even today I still enjoy looking at my first trophy for the local club championship.

Then I stopped playing chess at an age I suppose a lot of people do. First it was college (university), then romance, trying to make a living and starting my career. I might have never played again, if it had not been for a friend of mine visiting me from Germany. We spent a night playing chess on the internet, and that got me hooked again. I started looking for a local chess club, but with two young kids it was not something my family would have enjoyed. So I stumbled upon an interesting alternative: correspondence chess, in particular correspondence chess via e-mail.

I first joined IECG, but since nobody could remember my rating, I had to start at the bottom. Soon I learned about ICCF and APCT. My ratings are climbing and with that, my opponents become stronger. I know that I made the right decision.

Currently, I am taking aim at reaching a World Championship Semi-Final...

Email: Frank Goebert

Frank Geider (FRA) - Tournament Director

In October 2005, at the ICCF Congress in Villa La Angostura Neuquen, Argentina, Frank Geider became the new ICCF World Tournament Director (WTD) and therefore a member of the ICCF Executive Board. Congratulations to Frank on his new (and very important) position!

[October 2006 update: Frank received his International Arbiter title at the 2006 ICCF Congress.]

Email: Frank Geider

Thomas Mirbach (GER) - Tournament Director

My Nick-name is Tom. I am 34 years old and married since 5 years with Elke. We live in a small town between Cologne and Aachen, near the border to the Netherlands. I play correspondence chess since 1987 with less success ;-). My current rating is 2355 and I am TD since 3 years, starting with the Jubilee Tournament. We have 5 dogs (Cavalier-King-Charles Spaniels), 4 cats and 2 horses. I am working half-time as a social worker and the rest in my wife`s veterinarian surgery.

I like sports, especially soccer (I played in the 3rd league in Germany) and running (Marathon). I collect chess computers. So, if you have one, you don`t need ... let me know ;-)

Our websites are: www.millcreek-cottage.de (dogs) and www.tierarztpraxis-mirbach.de (surgery)

[October 2006 update: Tom received his International Arbiter title at the 2006 ICCF Congress.]

Email: Thomas Mirbach

Tom Mirbach at the board

Tom Mirbach running in
the Cologne Marathon 2002

Thomas Schmelz (GER) - Tournament Director

Born: 1958
Profession: Pastor in St.Mary's in Bad Rodach (Northern Bavaria/Upper Franconia).
OTB: Until 1989 - Landesliga North/Bavaria (the second highest league in Bavaria), 1st board.
Correspondence: Final of the 16. german youth championship (1979/80) was my first tournament.
IM since 2001
SIM since 2002
ICCF rating (2004): 2488
Arbitor in EM/J50 and CL

Email: Thomas Schmelz

Gino Figlio (USA) - Tournament Director

I was born in Lima, Peru in 1961. Married my high school sweetheart, Carla in 1983. We have 5 children (Renzo, Carlo, Gino Jr., Adriana and Andrea) and 2 dogs (Angel and Mallow). Immigrated to USA in 1991. Finished my training in Pediatric Medicine in Brooklyn, NY in 1995. Relocated to Lamar, Colorado with all the family and been here ever since. I have a very busy pediatric practice in Lamar, and also work in Denver as a pediatric Emergency room physician.

My correspondence chess life started in 1995 and I expect that maturity will come one of these days (my wife of course disagrees ...). I enjoy working as a TD and am convinced that giving back to the system promotes equilibrium and longevity.

Other interests besides chess include poetry and sports (soccer and American football are the main ones).

tell me something I know
help me pronounce these flavors
colorful clouds
piercing the silence in the room
(deleted poems, 1960)

[October 2006 update: Gino has been appointed to the important post of Webserver Commissioner. He has also been doing a superb job on the Webserver Helpdesk and is a moving force in the design and implementation of the ICCF Webserver.

Gino also received his Senior International Master (SIM) title at the 2006 ICCF Congress.]

Email: Gino Figlio

The Figlio Family
Front row, left to right:
Adriana, Carla and Andrea
Back row: Renzo, Gino Jr., Carlo and Gino Sr.

Laurent Tinture (FRA) - Tournament Director

(Biographical information not yet available)

[October 2006 update: Laurent received his International Arbiter title at the 2006 ICCF Congress.]

Email: Laurent Tinture

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