I’ve often said that every time that I interact with Jonah, I learn something new… and over the years, between events, conferences, and projects, I’ve interacted with him a lot. Jonah and I first met at an SCG Open in 2015. Even though we were both newly certified, he was quick to offer me help with studying the rules. He’s been a steady ally ever since. From the odd rules or policy question, to supporting me with projects, all the way up to being second-in-command to my role as Regional Coordinator, I’ve always been able to rely on him no matter the issue.
He brings that same quiet confidence and willingness to help to everything else he does. With his flexibility, it’s not uncommon to see him working multiple roles simultaneously at an event to make sure nothing slips through the cracks. Even then, he’ll still find time to shadow floor judges and offer pointers without ever losing his signature grin. He’ll often get a whole staff talking about an interesting ruling or a better way to take a call, gently guiding the discussion from the sides while letting other folks explore and learn.
Off the floor, he’s known for leading projects like Mystical Tutor or Planar Bridge to encourage growth in the program. It’s a role he excels at with his kind but firm task management and his approachability. Other times, he’ll dedicate his attention and care to writing reviews for his peers, addressing difficult situations in a way that has been described as fearless – but he never considers the conversation finished after the review. He regularly follows up on feedback that he gave folks months ago, talking them through points that were improved on and highlighting areas where they still have room to grow.
Jonah brings a calm and unshakable foundation to the program. No matter what problems arise he’ll see that they’re solved, quickly and easily. When there are no fires to put out or holes to patch, his focus is on building up the judges around him, to make sure they can confidently handle whatever happens next. As he steps into greater leadership and mentoring opportunities as an L3, I’m confident that he’ll continue to provide his best.
You can congratulate Jonah on his promotion post on the Magic Judges Facebook page.