Politics and Chess

From playing chess, I have learned two practices that I use in my working life—teamwork and the act of strategizing.

In chess, each player has 16 pieces to work with. A chess player learns how to use a “team” of pieces to accomplish the task at hand—get to checkmate.

In politics and local government, teamwork is essential to accomplish tasks. To build a road, for example, requires coordination of several groups—the transportation department, water department, electric and/or gas company, and more. If one were to view each department as a chess piece, someone needs to coordinate the workings of each piece. As mayor, I orchestrate teams of people to complete projects.

In chess, each piece has its own way of working. The rook, for example, only moves horizontally and vertically.  The pawn can move forward but not backward. This knowledge plays a part in a chess player’s strategy of how to maneuver the pieces to win.

Knowing how to strategize is very effective in politics and local government. To pass an ordinance, for example, requires the approval from the City Council. To get approval, the information needs to be presented in a way that’s understandable to the Council. Having the knowledge of each Council member’s perspective—similar to knowledge of how a chess piece moves—is necessary to move items forward on the Council’s agenda.  We don’t declare checkmate in our proceedings, but a win is just as gratifying.

Mayor Rothschild is a native Tucsonan. His grandmother moved to Tucson in 1942 and opened a used furniture store, Valley Fair, on South 6th Avenue.
He is a graduate of Canyon del Oro High School, Kenyon College and the University of New Mexico Law School. After serving as a law clerk for District Court Judge Alfredo C. Marquez, he went on to a 30-year career practicing law with the firm of Mesch, Clark and Rothschild. He served as managing partner for the firm and concentrated his practice in the areas of business law and estate planning.
The mayor has a long history of service with many nonprofits in the community and served as Board President for Casa de los Niños, Handmaker Services for the Aging and Temple Emanu-el. He is married, with three children and two grandchildren.

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