Into the North

Greetings, and welcome to the newly-formed USA-North region!

I am your shiny new RC, Rob McKenzie.  Yes, we have officially separated the saucer section and split the region.  In fact, the prior Midwest region has been split into three regions.  The new region breakdowns, and some judge numbers sampled from JudgeApps I’ll need later, are:

Regional Coordinator Rob McKenzie
Wisconsin – 82 judges
Minnesota – 93 judges
South Dakota – 15  judges
North Dakota – 5  judges

Regional Coordinator Steven Briggs
Illinois – 150  judges
Iowa – 33  judges
Nebraska – 18  judges
Missouri – 70  judges
Kansas (originally part of the South region) – 26  judges

USA-Great Lakes
Regional Coordinator is Jarrod Williams
Michigan – 141  judges
Ohio – 96  judges
Indiana – 84  judges
Kentucky – 66  judges

So, that sounds pretty sweet.  But why three regions?  Those judge numbers I stuck in there above are the core reason.  The regions have 195, 297, and 387 judges respectively.  To give you an idea of what other region sizes look like, here are the rest of the regions in the US:

Southeast – 423 judges
MidAtlantic – 439 judges
Northeast – 516 judges
South – 316 judges
Southwest – 423 judges
Northwest – 417 judges

The old Midwest region had a whopping 879 judges, almost as much as two other regions combined.  Now, you can say that to bring the region size in line with others, we should just split to 2 regions of about 440 judges.  That’s doable, but would leave little to no headroom for growth.  With a three way split, that makes for smaller and more manageable regions, where the RC can give more personal attention to areas and people.

So what does this mean for day-to-day judging?

Almost nothing!  Your events are the same.  Your process for resolving problems is the same, just routed to my inbox rather than Steven Briggs.

What kind of new and interesting things are already happening?

I’ve made a couple new things, a USA-North Facebook group, and a USA-North Slack chat, to help us keep in touch and feel cohesive as a region.  I’ve invited a ton of judges to the Facebook group, but feel free to join if you want to find out regional news or chat with regional judges.  The slack chat requires an invite – I’ve shipped an invite out to all the emails that L2+ judges have in JudgeApps.  If you are an L1 that is looking to join the slack chat, or you did not get the slack invite, shoot either Rob McKenzie or Erick Carlsted an email, and we will get you an invite.

Area Captains?

You can see we have an Area Captains link up top, which is currently pretty empty.  In the next few weeks I’ll be getting Area Captains sorted out – I have to reach out the people I think are strong area leaders and get things set.  I plan to use a little bit more granular system than the Midwest’s State Captains system, and have less work for each Captain to do.  I’ll make an update post here with Area Captain info once I have it ironed out.

Conferences and Miniconferences

Yep, we get regional conferences.  They will be cool.  We will also have miniconferences – these are something I want to talk with the Area Captains about.  So details on conferences and miniconferences will have to wait a bit until after Area Captains are set.

I have more questions!

Awesome.  The Facebook group or Slack chat will let you chat with people in the region, or email me through my JudgeApps page – I’ll do my best to be responsive.  Comments are also live here – I will answer those as I can.  Anything that looks like it needs a broader and more permanent answer will get posted here.

Also, there is going to be an AMA upcoming on the MTGJudge subreddit.  Look for that next Tuesday.  Briggs, Jarrod, and myself will be answering questions then.

Thanks for reading.  I’m looking forward to where our region can go, and I’m excited to get to work as your Regional Coordinator.