Get Hype! – Your 2018 Hype Team is here!

O! Canada,

It’s finally time to unveil your Canadian Hype Team! But first, the support and excitement around the initiative so far has been really encouraging, and we received A LOT of applications from A LOT of talented people.

The team leads and I selected members to the team to build a group that is capable of achieving some specific goals, physical and emotional, in the community. In the future, more opportunities are certain to open up, not only to join the team, but also to contribute to specific projects and initiatives that originate from the team. So, if you weren’t selected initially, but are still keen to be involved, keep your ears and eyes open for the many exciting projects in the works.

For those judges selected to the team, congratulations! Expect a flurry of activity and notifications in the coming days as we start getting you folks organized and begin building the hype!

Now to the teams:

Logistics

Cali Smith
Logistics Lead

Cali Smith
Logistics Lead

Hails from: Halifax, NS

Favourite card: Geist of Saint Traft. That baby got me my very first top 8. Who doesn’t like making attacking angels?! Also lightning bolt

Favourite thing about the Judge Program: The people, hands down. The judge program is one big family made up of some of the most dedicated and wonderful humans I’ve ever met. Their love of the game and drive to provide an excellent experience for players and other judges is amazing. I’ve made so many friends through the judge program, and even though they’re scattered all over the world, you still feel the love every day!

How has Magic benefited you: Magic came in to my life during a tough time. I started playing after finding a box of old cards in a friend’s attic. We spent hours reading the rules and researching sets. We brought it up at work one day and two of our co-workers happened to play as well! We spent lunch hours playing and helping each other. We started playing at a local store one Friday and it stuck.

Magic gave me a hobby, confidence, and a welcomed distraction during a rough patch. It gave me life-long friends, a chance to see the world, and my fiance.

Cali has been working behind the scenes on “hype team” content before there was a Hype Team. She was inspired by the great judges in our region and abroad working at the administration desk at a number of Grand Prix, and began to develop the swag she felt Canadian’s deserve. She’s a self-identified aggro player since M10 and brings logistical expertise to the Hype Team from volunteer experiences with charitable organizations, along with 10 years experience as a university administrator. Already she’s cooked up some exciting SWAG concepts for Canadian Judges that I guarantee will bring the hype!

The Logistics Team

Seth Black

Seth Black

Rick Salamin

Rick Salamin

James Edwards

James Edwards

Kevin Rocheleau

Kevin Rocheleau

The goal of Logistics is to get as much gear as possible into judges hands. Design, creation, and distribution will be a major challenge for this team as they set up the first coordinated Canadian judge swag effort. The Hype Team thrives on new and exciting ideas, so the Logistics team should be motivated to give the people what they want–and we’ll be looking to the people to provide frequent feedback on the judge gear coming your way!

Breaks

Sam Hung
Breaks Lead

Sam Hung
Breaks Lead

Hails from: Edmonton, AB

Favourite card: Stormbreath Dragon. I used him to earn my first Game Day mat.

Favourite thing about the Judge Program: Meeting my Judge family from far and wide. Seeing them at GPs and judge conferences. Meeting so many friendly judges around the world is really great.

How has Magic benefited you: Magic has helped me work outside the box. It has helped me outside the game and inside the game. It also is a great way to meet new friends.

Sam is an L2 who’s been around the game since 2014, and judging since 2016. He brings the organizational skills from his work as an IT Systems Admin to the team—and to his hobbies. He’s a big XCOM and Civilizations fan! Sam’s been working hard of late putting together some judge training programs to support judges looking for Comp REL experience in remote communities. That initiative lends itself well the remote coordination of the Breaks team, and we’re excited about the social and educational events that will come out of this project!

The Breaks Team

Angus Davis

Angus Davis

Peter Davies

Peter Davies

Aaron O’Connor

Aaron O’Connor

David Poon

David Poon

The Breaks team coordinates social events across the country. These events are entirely separate from Judge Conferences, but there may be some overlap with conferences and integration with large events in various cities. The Breaks team helps to weave the fabric of our community, and this team will be also looking for the non-hype-team judges motivated enough to host coordinated events in their local communities.

Coverage

Alex Larente
Coverage Lead

Alex Larente
Coverage Lead

Hails from: Vancouver, BC

Favourite card: Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite. This card has amazing art, a significant place in MTG lore, and is devastating in Commander. I always include one in every deck I play.

Favourite thing about the Judge Program: Introducing new players to Magic and seeing their first steps into event play at a prerelease. It’s a great feeling watching our hobby grow.

How has Magic benefited you: The community around Magic has given me so many opportunities to learn and grow. From learning photoshop so I could start making card alters and avatars for my favourite forums, to building entire websites to talk about my favourite decks, cards, and strategies; this game has really inspired me in almost every aspect of my life.

Alex Larente is probably best known in the judge community for his work with the Judge Discord server, which is consistently active across many regions, and hosts semi-regular rules/policy/program discussion sessions. Often, they bring in heavyweights of the judge program to provide feedback and direction. Alex has been in the program for about three years, but has been collecting Magic cards for 20 years. He runs MTGVAN, promoting events and Magic groups in his area, and he’s going to bring that social media expertise to our Coverage team to broaden the reach of our hype!

The Coverage Team

Kaitlin McLachlan

Kaitlin McLachlan

Jacob Ender

Jacob Ender

Jovy Eramela

Jovy Eramela

The Coverage team is the voice of the hype. They are responsible for generating hype about Canadian blogs, events, and news, but they are likewise responsible for keeping Canadian judges informed on social media buzz, program news, and policy changes as quickly as possible. Look for a Canadian Judge presence to pop up on a number of platforms. And look for your own bright, smiling faces on those social feeds!

Paper

Mike Gyssels
Paper Lead

Mike Gyssels
Paper Lead

Hails from: London, ON

Favourite card: Mystical Teachings Get it? Because I’m a teacher? But also, Pauper is the best; durdling is the best; U/B is the best. This card is all those things.

Favourite thing about the judge program Magic: Mystical Teachings

How has Magic benefited you: Mystical Tea—Magic brought me the judge program. It helped me build really meaningful connections with students when I was a teacher. It’s brought me a plethora of new friends and helped me to branch out, travel, and take on challenges that I normally would have avoided. I am a very different person than when I started playing Magic, and I believe a lot of that personal growth and development is owed to the game. 

I’m staying on as the Paper Lead this year because there’s a great deal of behind the scenes training that has to happen to run a blog on the Magic Judges domain. My focus as lead will largely fall to communicating the standards I’ve been given by blog sphere management, integrating the other teams and their platforms into WordPress’ functionality, and editing the writing and work of the rest of the team. I’m looking forward to using the blog to communicate a lot of the awesome work the rest of the Hype Team will be doing this year, and training up a new lead for 2019!

The Paper Team

Kenny Dolson

Kenny Dolson

Dale Marsh

Dale Marsh

Alex Frank

Alex Frank

Rick Miles

Rick Miles

The Paper team drives the blog, making decisions about the types of articles we’ll be posting, working with external content creators to edit and produce quality reads, hyping up Eh-xemplar content each wave, and ultimately providing a home for great Canadian judge writing, like GP travel guides and Conference Powerpoints.

We’ve got LOTS of exciting news coming your way shortly. For now, if you have questions, you can reach out via Facebook or canadajudge.mtg@gmail.com

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