VISION (About us):
The Gardiner Chess vision is to bring chess into the classrooms of as many schools as possible, with the aim of establishing a thriving chess culture throughout Queensland.
This has been motivated by the extensive findings of world-wide research, revealing the huge benefits for children learning to play chess.
We believe in providing a positive impact on society. This is why Gardiner Chess actively strive to strengthen a child’s mental clarity, fortitude, stability and overall health through high quality chess coaching.
We believe that chess can be used as a metaphor for life – You have to be responsible for your actions, make a move, and plan ahead.
Our coaching methods and the way we run our business are based on the following pillars:
Determination: It is vital that we remain active and resourceful and never give up. We endeavour to teach the values of relentless determination.
Patience: An important virtue throughout life, which sets the foundations for success.
Discipline: A disciplined approach always comes with rewards. Applying ‘good practice’ principles provides an excellent foundation to build from.
Responsibility for our actions: Take pride in your own and fellow team mates’ achievements with all wins and understand how you can improve with your losses. Every move we make has a consequence and reaction and this can be expanded into life decisions.
Respect: Chess is a courteous game and the respect we give to our players is paramount both during a game and in society.
Fun: Children crave fun, so it’s essential that we maintain a high level of engagement and interest in everything we do to keep our customers absorbed and productive.
Imagination and Creativity: Chess provides a large canvas for investing and testing unique ideas, that’s why we believe in applying these thought processes in our business and introduce elements of clear thinking.
Logic and Reasoning: In life we are faced with many challenges that require fine judgement of stringing together a series of logical thoughts to come to a conclusion, which can be applied at all levels.
Strategic Thinking: In every aspect of life, we aim to see the bigger picture before making a critical decision.
The Gardiner Chess Team
Gardiner Chess is owned and operated by Justine Jule and Andrew Fitzpatrick. Justine has been with Gardiner Chess for over 13 years, managing the office, and the school coaching programs amongst various other activities. Whilst Justine is not a competitive chess player herself, Justine’s children all play chess, with WIM Alexandra Jule being an Australian representative at the 2016 World Chess Olympiad.
Andrew joined Gardiner Chess in 2010, having previously worked for Chess Kids in Victoria and Chess With Geoff in the ACT. Despite not playing competitively anymore, Andrew has played chess throughout Oceania and has coached chess since the age of 14. One of only 3 FIDE Instructors in Queensland, Andrew drives the coaching and curriculum development and is currently overseeing the roll-out of the Chesskid.com program throughout Gardiner Chess’ client base. If you have attended an Inter-School chess tournament in the past 8 years, you will have seen Andrew making sure everything runs smoothly. Andrew is also a qualified FIDE Arbiter and is working towards becoming an FIDE International Organiser.
Martin Harmon has been with the company for many years as a chess coach, whilst undertaking his studies including a secondary teaching degree. Martin’s love of chess has transitioned into a full-time position with Gardiner Chess where he undertakes a variety of roles including coaching chess, running Brisbane holiday programs and tournaments and crucially organising training for Brisbane based coaches and following this up with mentoring on an ongoing basis.
FIDE Master Dusan Stojic is in charge of the highly-regarded Somerset College chess program and also coaches at a number of other lucky schools. As Dusan is one of the strongest players in Queensland, he is a fantastic asset to the company and gives all students a positive role model and aspiration to reach their goals. Dusan is also very close to achieving his FIDE Arbiter title and will be aiming to finalise this in 2019.
Shaun Curtis has recently joined the full-time staff and has been with the company ever since leaving high school. Shaun is one of the most popular coaches on staff, working with a large number of students privately, and with the ever growing Emmanuel College chess program. In 2019, Shaun is transitioning into an events based role coordinating the Inter-School Chess Championships around Queensland. Shaun is also an organiser of major weekend events and has developed fantastic relationships with Australia’s strongest players which has helped develop the Gold Coast Open into one of the strongest weekend events in the country!