July 2012 Anniversaries


Here are the July 2012 judge anniversaries.

10 years

Evan Carrier, Lyndhurst, Ohio, United States
Nathan Young, Toledo, Ohio, United States
Steven Glowacki, Sterling Heights, Michigan, United States
Ryan Stapleton,  Chantilly, Virginia, United States
Sikarin Korchareon, Bangkok,Thailand
Marco C. Bracalente,  Montegranaro, Ascoli Piceno, Italy

5 years

Fumiki Nakano, Utsunomiya-shi, Tochigi-ken, Japan
Daisuke Okaben, Sagamihara-shi, Kanagawa-ken, Japan
Benjamin Millman, Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Congratulations, and thank you for all your hard work!

Our featured judge this month is Ryan Stapleton from Virginia, United States. Regional Coordinator Jared Sylva writes:

If you look closely, the wizard has his own nametag

“This month, our ten year anniversary focus is on a judge who has worked very hard to get to where he is and who is still very active on a national scale. A fixture on the US Grand Prix circuit, Ryan Stapleton has taken to the leadership role of a level 3 with passion and expertise. Promoted to Level 3 at Pro Tour Philadelphia in 2011, he has always proved that Level isn’t necessary to make an impact.

Ryan has been a leader in Magic Judge technological tools for years, providing updated documents and materials for hand held devices independently through ISilo and later coordinating all hand held resources through the Judge Wiki at http://wiki.internationalmagicjudges.net/index.php/Handhelds. Additionally, his work on the flashcard project (http://www.bluewizard.net/Bluewizards_Tower/Magic_Judge_Resources.html) has helped judges across the program to challenge themselves and build their knowledge.

Locally, many of the judges who attended GP: DC in 2010 will remember the epic barbeque that Ryan hosted. I think you can still find the pictures on facebook… Ryan has been a pillar of the Baltimore and DC Judging community since I have known him, and a leader and mentor to those who are looking to certify or advance in the program. Fellow North Virginia judge Abe Corson – “I was there for his first PTQ as head judge, and, likewise, he was there for mine a year or two later.  He’s always been as supportive and helpful to his community as anybody else I’ve met, and I’m proud to consider him both a colleague and friend.”

Ryan is not shy about sharing his many passions with the Magic community. An avid gamer of all cloaks, he is a fixture at GenCon and his game room is a wonder to behold. An advocate for Crohn’s disease awareness and research, Ryan has organized charity Magic events as part of his fundraising efforts, he always gets the best GoFundMe ideas online. Last, but certainly not least, Ryan’s Lego name tag is well known with, or without, his trademark blue wizard.

I have been lucky enough to work with Ryan for many of his 10 years. He is a model judge and a steward of his community. The example that he sets for other judges is extraordinary and I am proud to be able to congratulate him on the exceptional accomplishment of 10 years in the Magic Judge Program!”

This month, we have one Level 3 anniversary. Michael Wiese of Germany was promoted to L3 in 2007. Here’s what L3 judge Stefan Ladstätter had to say about Michael:

Excuse me, but is that giant skull still following me around?

“Michael Wiese is one of the cornerstones of the international judge program and the driving force behind the recent growth—both in numbers and quality—of the German speaking judge community. Michael’s professional attitude, dedication, generosity and openness not only make him an awesome judge and perfect Regional Coordinator, but also one of the best mentors I have met. From my first GP to becoming L3, Michael has been one of the most important influences on me as a judge. He immediately made me feel welcome, and didn’t hesitate to push me when I needed pushing and leaving me to find my own way when that was the right thing to do.

I love that he can be very outspoken in his opinions and doesn’t hold back, neither with praise nor criticism. I can’t think of any topic that I would hesitate to discuss with him, not only because I value his insights, but also because I trust him completely. Michael, the judge community is a better place because of you, and I’m looking forward to working together with you for many more anniversaries!”

Level 3 judge Jens Strohäker has some additional comments about Michael:

“Michael has been around in the German Magic Scene for so long, I don’t even remember when I first met him. It may have been the weekend around Frankfurt where he turned L2 that was also my first Magic premier event as a judge. That must have been nearly 8 or 9 years – It seems like ages ago. He has not changed a lot since these days. Michael has always been the friendly and open person that he is nowadays.  Nearly no one I got to
know in the program was so helpful and would approach people so open-heartedly like him. He has been responsible for the certification of some of the finest judges the German community has had in the recent years and even though he now has a job and got married
recently, he still finds the time to answer player and judge’s questions regularly on Facebook on Thursdays nearly every single week of the year. Even while I’m writing about these memories, he is on the floor, currently judging the WMCQ in Nuremberg.

His biggest triumph I was present at was the weekend of US Nationals in 2007. We were both invited to Baltimore to Judge and develop our skills. Michael furthermore was an L2 at that time and supposed to be tested for L2 –Trainer (which at that time meant one would be allowed to take L1 tests – which was apart from trainers limited to L3+) His interview during the panel not only proved he was capable of being a good trainer, he even convinced the three Judges not only to give him the trainer status they even decided to reward his restless endeavor with a promotion to L3. It was amazing being with him during these glory hours. As the years passed by, he established himself as the leading Judge in Germany and therefore it was only a matter of time that he succeeded Falko Görres as the German regional coordinator when the latter had to step down in the program. If you have not met Michael W. yet, you should really try and get to
know him. You won’t regret a minute you spend with him.”

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