Announcing the Magic Judge Hall of Fame

The Magic Judge Hall of Fame

Over the last 20 years, tournament Magic has transformed. From the earliest days of elimination events run at conventions, through the upcoming Modern Masters 2015 weekend where more than ten thousand players will play at three global locations, and from the relaxed fun of the Prerelease to the white-hot competition of the Pro Tour, Magic Judges are present at every part of organized play. The creed “keep it fair, keep it fun” leads thousands of volunteers to dedicate their time and energy to making tournaments better for everyone there.


With the launch of the Exemplar Program, we have seen a new page turned in how the Judge Program recognizes exceptional effort and quality at the local level. Today we are announcing a new effort to recognize the best of the best with the Judge Program’s highest honor: the Magic Judge Hall of Fame.

Below are some details on our vision for the Hall of Fame. For those of you wanting to dive into the details of how the Hall of Fame operates, that can be found here. For discussion of the Hall of Fame, what it means, and who should be inducted when the first regular class is formed later this year, check out the Magic Judge Hall of Fame forum on JudgeApps.


What makes a Hall of Fame judge?

The qualities of a Hall of Fame judge include:

Fairness

The greatest judges show a respect for the rules combined with deep ability to converse about the philosophy that underpins them. They show a fair hand to all and are a voice of reason in any discussion. They are role models in fair play and even treatment.

Impact

The greatest judges make long-lasting, significant improvements to their community, to the Judge Program, and to the game of Magic. Whether in tournament operations, the policies of judging, or more, they leave each part of Magic better than they found it.

Community

The greatest judges are the pillars of their community, both locally and across the Judge Program. They look after their fellow Magic folk, and are recognized as strong, compassionate leaders.

Dedication

The greatest judges show their love for supporting the game across a long period of time and around the world. They sacrifice time, travel for long hours, and work hard to make the game of Magic as good as it can be.

Mentorship

The greatest judges are inspiring teachers and mentors, helping to grow and nurture generations of new judges. They are insightful, eloquent, and supportive feedback providers. They are the reason why many new judges decided to get into the Judge Program.

Ultimately, each individual will have their own interpretation of what makes a Magic Judge Hall of Fame candidate. As you will see on the rules page, a voting process will determine who will make up each class.

We encourage anyone that’s interested – whether you have a ballot or not – to talk about those judges that inspire and motivate you, and why you think they should be in the Magic Judge Hall of Fame. There is a new forum created on JudgeApps for exactly that reason. On social media, we’re using #mtgjhof to discuss this.

If you have a ballot and wish to share your reasoning, you can also post that in the same forum.


What it means

Membership of the Magic Judge Hall of Fame is a sign of permanent distinction: a judge whose efforts in improving the game are recognized worldwide. The number of inductees will make this an elite group.

There will also be a unique item of memorabilia issued to each member. For more details, check back in July when the 2008 class is inducted.


A note on Emeritus Judges

You might be aware that a small group of retired Level 5 judges were recognized for their exceptional efforts in shaping and leading the Judge Program. When creating the Magic Judge Hall of Fame, we were aware that the aims of these groups overlapped. After consideration, it was decided to retire the “Judge Emeritus” status, and instead automatically pass these judges as the First Class of the Magic Judge Hall of Fame.

As such, we are proud to welcome the Emeritus judges as the First Class of the Magic Judge Hall of Fame:

Michael Guptil
 Michigan, USA

Michael Guptil
Michigan, USA

Collin Jackson
 Washington, USA

Collin Jackson
Washington, USA

                         
Jaap Brouwer
 Netherlands

Jaap Brouwer
Netherlands

Sheldon Menery
 Florida, USA

Sheldon Menery
Florida, USA

About David Lyford-Smith

David has been a Level 3 judge since 2010 and is the Regional Coordinator for South Africa & the British Isles. He was a contributing author to the modern Missed Triggers policy and the Judge Code of Conduct, and is the head of the Player Experience Sphere.
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