By Olga Inglis, Manager of Business Development, Premier Chess
Photo Credit: Alexandra Vainshtein
“What we make of the future is defined by how well we understand and make sense of the past.”
– Garry Kasparov
In May of 2019, I wanted “to make sense of the past.” When my dear friend Sabina Veksler suggested that both of us attended Steve Eisenberg’s Monday Torah class, I was all for it.
Sabina is a personification of Tikkun Olam. She can jump-start Jewish Philanthropy, structure a sustainability bond, and hand-deliver a hot Passover Seder Dinner to a friend and her children in the eye of pandemic (it was delicious).
I heard that Steve’s boundless passion and enthusiasm captivated every student in the room. I got to experience it myself. In addition to teaching, Steve did and does his best to help people. His desire to improve people’s lives is genuine and thus far-reaching.
Authenticity is a beautiful, magnetic thing. By meeting Steve, I met amazing people who opened their doors as well as their hearts to me. Remarkable Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald was one of them. He taught me that love is so powerful that it opens up new dimensions in our minds and our hearts, and that the real source of power is in interdependence, not independence. Rabbi Buchwald’s words came straight from the heart. And as we know, “words from the heart enter the heart.”
I met Jeff Koblenz, CPA, a kind and vibrant Real Estate and Insurance Professional, gifted educator, who upon finding out about my chess passion, introduced me to Evan Rabin, National Master and CEO of Premier Chess.
Evan is a go-getter. He is self-motivated, energetic, and his enthusiasm is contagious. Evan’s life is a simultaneous exhibition ranging from school programs, corporate classes, private lessons, camps, podcast, and everything in between. I don’t know where he finds the energy or the time. Somehow he does.
Evan’s custom tailors his chess program for all walks of life and age ranges. My daughter’s first formal introduction to chess was through the Premier Chess Winter Camp. She fell in love with the game. His 144th podcast episode features Israeli Grandmaster Victor Mikhalevski. Victor says that love for the game is vital to success in chess. This is where I find Premier Chess both special and unique. Evan’s approach is both rational and emotional. Premier Chess’s ability to infuse the game with passion is extraordinary.
Tomorrow will be a new day, a new set of questions and uncertainties. Some things will be within my control and many will not. My chessboard will be in the usual spot, on the shelf to the right of my piano. And what a joy it will be to see both of my children, staring intently at the chessboard, choosing which piece to advance, which to sacrifice, and most importantly, having fun.