March 2014 Anniversaries

Here are the March 2014 anniversaries!

15 years

Masayuki Kunimitsu, Kochi-ken, Japan
Takeshi Miyasaka, Kanagawa-ken, Japan
Yoshiya Shindo, Tokyo-to, Japan
Kazuhiro Wakatsuki, Saitama-ken, Japan
Kaoru Yonemura, Osaka-fu, Japan

10 years

Cesar Fernandez Martin, Spain
Gavin S Verhey, Washington, United States
Nicholas Sabin, Virginia, United States
Yuu Saitou, Japan
Toshiyuki Seino, Miyagi-ken, Japan
Bertrand Payet, Sainte Clotilde, France
Camille Poquet, France
Falko Goerres, Hessen, Germany
Aaron Cutler, Ohio, United States
Larry Kozlowski, Pennsylvania, United States
Eric Lindsay, New Brunswick, Canada
Michael Pooler, Ohio, United States

5 years

Louis Fernandes, California, United States
Jorge Monteiro, Portugal
Nicolas Toffolo, Belgium
Stephane Guilbert, France
Lorenzo Andalo, Italy
Filipe Fernandes, Portugal
Shinpei Ohkawa, Hiroshima-ken, Japan
Jason Reedy, Virginia, United States
Jesus Roxas, Illinois, United States
Alexandre Aurejac, France
Maximilien Berger, France
Vuk Gavrilovic, Roma, Italy
Sebastian Reinfeldt, Hessen, Germany
Artyom Pozhilenkov, Russian Federation
Sandra Regalado, Spain

Congratulations and thank you for all your hard work!

This month’s featured judge is Kaoru “Pao” Yonemura of Japan. Fellow judge Takuya Masuyama wrote this about him:

“One of the most senior judges in Japan, Pao “The Translator” Yonemura has been active in numerous events since 1997 and continues today to serve as the Japanese Magic expert, while simultaneously judging Japanese Grand Prixs and PTQ’s.  He is Japan’s Netrep and has developed a role for himself as the rules guru of the Japanese Magic community.

He stole the English!

He stole the English!

The greatest among Pao’s numerous feats is his pioneering of the world’s first translation of the Comprehensive Rules into another language.  No other projects like this existed at the time of its commencement; he and his supporters faced unprecedented difficulties.  This great undertaking helped many aspiring judges and greatly contributed to the expansion of the Japanese Magic community.  (He joked that he stole the English away from Magic in Japan.)

When Pao goes to a GP, he takes along something marvelous: handbooks he prints himself which contain the Comprehensive Rules, the IPG, and the MTR, and fit neatly into a back trouser pocket, which he hands out to the attending judges.  Not only are these handbooks helpful for confirming rules when making a ruling, they boast one other use: serving as a handy flat surface for recording penalties!

Pao operates a rules translations website which archives rules spanning back for generations.  There is not a judge in Japan who has not visited his site. (”

(Translated by Mitchell Waldbauer)

Original text:

 日本最古のジャッジの一人である「The translator」米村「Pao」薫は1997年よりジャッジとして膨大な数のイベントで活動し、現在は日本語版マジックのSMEを勤める傍ら、日本国内のGPや自らの主催するPTQでジャッジとして活動を続けています。彼はまたJapan Netrepでもあり、日本のマジック・コミュニティにおけるルール・グルの役割を果たしてきました。




This month we have another Level 3 anniversary.  In 2009, Riki Hayashi passed his L3 exam at Pro Tour Kyoto.  We asked Tasha Jamison, Level 3 judge, for some thoughts about Riki.  This is what she had to say:

“Riki is preceded by his reputation. I first met Riki at GP Minneapolis 2009 where he was the testing coordinator and I was a candidate for level 1. He didn’t bother to introduce himself before launching into questions involving cards like Hindering Light and Wall of Roots. Even then, I already knew him as he often introduces himself – “Riki Hayashi, from the Internet.”

Riki Five-Years

Riki Five-Years

We judges often call ourselves a family. Riki epitomizes this attitude: as an only child of only children, he has adopted the entire judge program as his extended family. Together, we’ve shared the loss of grandparents, the joy of our engagement and (soon) marriage, and the turmoil of two cross-country moves. We’ve been welcomed to share in the triumphs and tragedies of your families, as well: births and deaths, weddings and divorces. Through it all, our judge family has been a source of support and courage wherever we find ourselves in the world.

Stony exterior and all, there’s no mistaking Riki’s deep passion and commitment to the people in the judge program. This comes from Riki’s conviction that judging creates opportunities to change lives for the better – for proof, just look at his campaigns for feedback and fitness (#mtgfit).

I’ll close with a piece of advice – if Riki ever asks you, “Wanna bet?”… Just say no. This goes double for an attempt to surprise.”

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