Colorado Chess Instruction

Chessboard The following individuals have requested to be listed as teachers of chess in Colorado. CSCA is listing them as a service to the general public; however, it should be understood that this listing does not constitute an endorsement. Individuals that are interested in private or group lessons should contact each instructor to determine pricing and availability.

See also Colorado's Scholastic Chess Camps
Locations:   Denver Area   Boulder Area   Colorado Springs   Elizabeth   Ft. Collins   Louisville Area Western Slope Area

Michael Mulyar
Phone: 720 515 1642
Rating: 2464
Ages: all
Location: Westminster, CO
Willing to travel: Within Denver metro area

Other highlights:
  • Willing to coach all levels
  • Available for both individual and group instruction
Brief Description
  • International Master
  • 5-time Colorado State Champion
  • coaching experience with junior players (1993- present)

NM Lior Lapid
Phone: 720 317-7810
Rating: 2289
Ages: all
Location: Greenwood Village, CO
Willing to travel: Yes, within the Denver Metro Area. Also available for online lessons via Skype and

Other highlights:
  • National Master
  • Founder and Head Coach at PALS Chess Academy
  • Private coach of several scholastic state champions in New Mexico and Colorado
  • Available for both individual and group lessons, in-person or online
  • 20 years of chess teaching experience in schools, summer camps and private lessons
  • M.A., Political Science, New Mexico State University
Brief Description

Selected Tournament Highlights:
  • 2016 Colorado Closed State Champion
  • 2015 Colorado Closed State Champion
  • 2013 Denver Open Champion
  • 2013 Colorado Open Co-Champion (among CO players)
  • 2011 Southern Rocky FIDE Open Champion (ahead of two Grandmasters)
  • K-12 National Champion (2000)
  • K-9 National Champion (1997)
  • Three-time New Mexico State Champion

NM Jesse Cohen
Cell Phone: (720) 243-1450
Rating: FIDE 2261, USCF 2220
Ages: all
Location: Northglenn, CO
Willing to travel: Yes – Areas surrounding the Denver metro area, Boulder and Longmont.

National Master
University of Wyoming, B.A., 2009
Chess Instructor – summer chess program, after school chess program, small group lessons, private lessons
Founder and Instructor of the Summit School of Chess.
Specializing in personalized chess instruction tailored to maximize students growth.
Brief Description

  • 2014 Colorado State Open Champion
  • 4 time Wyoming Open State Champion (2007, 2005, 2004, 2003)
  • 2007 Loveland Open Champion
  • 2005 Denver Open Champion (tied)
  • 2004 Colorado Open Champion
  • 2004 Colorado Scholastic Champion
  • 2004 Loveland Open – drew Grandmaster Sharavdorj Dashzegve
  • 2003 Win over International Master Melikset Khachiwan at US Open
  • 2003 May Daze Open Champion
  • 2003 Wyoming State Scholastic Champion
  • 2002 National Youth Action Champion/Team Captain
  • 2002 Scholastic Closed Champion - Denker

NM Todd Bardwick
Phone: 303-770-6696
Rating: 2211
Ages: all
Location: (Denver Tech Center area)
Willing to travel: Yes

Other highlights:
  • National Chess Master
  • Five-time Denver Chess Champion and winner of numerous tournaments
  • Rocky Mountain News Chess Columnist (1993-2009)
  • Writes the "The Chess Detective" column in Chess Life for Kids magazine (2002-Present)
  • Published opening theorist in French Defence [in Play the French (by John Watson) and Inside Chess Magazine]
  • Runs Chess Academy of Denver
  • Gives chess seminar with blindfolded Knight's Tour twice a year at Pepsi Center at Family Chess Knight with the Denver Nuggets and the Colorado Avalanche.
  • Author of Teaching Chess in the 21st Century (receiving rave review from Bruce Pandolfini)
  • Author of Chess Workbook for Children (also translated and sold in Russia, Korea, and the Czech Republic)
  • Author of Chess Strategy Workbook (also translated and sold in Russia)
Brief Description
  • Nationally recognized Denver area chess instructor and one of only a handful of masters in the country who has taught over 10,000 chess classes
  • Twenty-five plus years full-time chess coaching experience (private lessons and classes); developed successful chess training system taught worldwide, providing the student with maximum results
  • With a background in structural engineering, teaching methodology is logically laid out to teach students how to approach the game like a chess master
  • Trained chess teachers nationwide for many years how to effectively teach chess to kids in a fun and instructive way
  • Coached many children who achieved national rankings for their age, including one student who was the top player for his age in the country and a national second and third grade champion
  • Coached numerous Colorado state championship scholastic teams and individual students - many scholastic students have gone on to receive degrees from top-notch universities
  • Twenty years experience organizing and running the annual Rocky Mountain Chess Camp, one of the nation's oldest and largest chess camps for children
  • USCF Senior Level Tournament Director organizing and running scholastic tournaments with well over 1000 participants a year. Many years experience running the Denver Scholastic Chess Series.

Brian Wall, Life Master
Phone: 720-646-9259
Rating: 2210 (Highest 2333)
Ages: all
Location: Anywhere but home (I live in Thornton, Co)
Willing to travel: Yes

Other highlights:
  • Life Master
  • ICC handle BrianWall
  • Free Chess Emails about Local Denver Chess scene- 15,000 written already! available to anyone in the World just by asking
  • 2002 Brian Wall (average rating: 2154)
  • 2005 Brian Wall (average rating: 2085)
  • 2007 Brian Wall (average rating: 2124)
Brief Description

I have been playing chess for 40 years-been teaching chess as a 2200+ for over half of that.

Chess titles
6 Denver Open Championships (tied or clear 1st)
7 Colorado Championships (tied or clear 1st)
1972 Colo Jr Champ (6-0)
1977 Denver Champ
1977 Colo CoChamp(with David Jellsion)
1993 Mass. Blitz Champ
2000(23 years later!!) Denver CoChamp (with McCarty and Hortillosa)
2001 Winner Wyoming Open
2001 Co-Champion Colorado Open
2002 Colo Closed Champ
2006 ICC webcaster to major world Chess events like Kramnik-Topalov
2007 Colo Closed Champ

Robert Ramirez
Cell Phone: (720) 879-2427
Rating: 2148
Ages: all
Location: Lakewood, CO 80226
Willing to travel: willing to travel, groups, exibitions, schools, programs of any kind. Will travel to surrounding cities for a small travel fee.

My lessons are designed to help the student gain the maximum rating points in the least amount of time through a personalized plan of improvement.

Brief Description

  • 2011 Denver Chess Champion*
  • 2011 Denver Blitz Chess Champion*
  • '06-07 Colorado Blitz Chess Champion!
  • 1st place tie U2000 North American Open 2004
  • 1st place 2007 DCC Red Hot Quick Tournament
  • 1st place tie with Tyler Hughes 2006 Boulder Fall Grand Prix
  • 2nd place U1800 2002 Edward Levy Memorial
  • 2nd place tie U2000 2005 World Open Quick Chess Championship
  • 3rd place U2000 First Annual HB Global Chess Challenge 2005
  • Defeated IM Emory Tate 2-0 in the 2005 World Open Blitz Championship

Richard Herbst
Phone: 303-941-0119
Rating: 2123
Location: Duke University (during school year)
Denver Tech Center (summertime)

Richard is a college student at Duke University and a member of the Carolina Cobras of the United States Chess League ( He is available to teach lessons via the internet during the school year, and in person in Denver in the summertime. He has been competing on the National level for twelve years. During this time period, he has been consistently ranked in the top 10-20 players in the country for his age. He has been coaching scholastic players, both individuals and school teams, for 9 years.

Brief Description

Accomplishments include:
  • Won "top expert" award at the 2009 US Open
  • 5-time Colorado Scholastic Open Champion (have won all 4 divisions: K-3;4-6;7-9;10-12)
  • 3-time Colorado Scholastic Closed Champion
  • 2005 National 8th Grade Co-Champion
  • 2005 National Junior High School Blitz Co-Champion
  • 10 Top-Ten finishes (4 Blitz) at the National Scholastic Chess Championships
  • 2000 National K-3U800 Champion

Jim Hammersmith
Phone: 303-933-2558
Rating: 2045
Ages: all
Location: 7778 West Plymouth Place, Littleton, CO 80128 near Coal Mine & Wadsworth (near Southwest Plaza)
Willing to travel: Lessons for individual students at home; will travel for groups

Other highlights:

It is my goal for all my students to have a love for the game of chess and to broaden their abilities as they take on life's challenges.

Brief Description

It has been my privilege and pleasure to teach chess the last 6 years.

  • 7 individual students have been State Scholastic Chess Champions
  • Numerous other individual students have won trophies at scholastic chess tournaments
  • Instructor at 8 chess camps
  • Summer school chess instructor for Littleton Public Schools
  • Head tournament director for the State scholastic tournament & other scholastic tournaments
  • Instructor in after/before school chess programs in about a dozen schools a year

Ted Doykos
Phone: 720-480-8352
Rating: 1936
Ages: all
Location: Denver, CO
Willing to travel: Yes

Other highlights:

Competing in tournaments since 1997 (over 200 events)
Three-time Colorado Tour Champion (2003, 2009, 2010)
Four 1st place finishes in the last two years

Brief Description
  • Teaching chess at elementary schools (and privately) since 2008
  • Experience tutoring students in English, Math, History, and Biology
  • Has received lessons from Grandmasters and International Masters, and
    understands what taking lessons is like from the student's perspective
  • B.A. Psychology, University of Colorado, 2008
  • Enjoys showing students that wining at chess is a lot of fun!

Jeffrey Baffo
Phone: 303-210-2160
Rating: 1879
Ages: all
Location: South Denver, Aurora, Centennial
Willing to travel: Yes


To introduce the wonderful mind-building, boredom-busting game of chess to any and all beginners. To help established Chess players reach their full potential.


Born 1957. US Air Force 1976-1996. Married to “my only sweetie”, Betty 1979. Two fantastic sons; Brandon and Joshua.

Learned Chess:

Circa 1968 (age 11) from my best friend. We had gone thru every game in his house and chess was the only one I didn’t think was boring. I was fully “captured” by the game during the “Fischer Boom”. While Bobby Fischer was making his run for the World Championship, I was so into it, I even kept a Bobby Fischer scrapbook!

1st tournament:

1971 = Forty-six years of tournament experience.

Playing and coaching highlights
  • Wichita Falls city champion, circa 1979
  • First place, Arkansas Class Championships (Open Division) 1984
  • Champion, Rock City Open (Class A) 1984
  • Tournament Director USAREUR V Corps Championship 1987
  • Hahn Air Base Champion 1987
  • Silver medal, Continental (US Military) Sports Conference 1987
  • “VerinMeisterSchaft” Champion, 1987
  • “BlitzTurnier” Champion, Germany, 1987
  • Boulder Open, 1st place (tie) U2000 section
  • Former top 50 in USA for Correspondence Chess
  • Editor, Colorado Chess Informant, 2002-2004
  • Champion, Edward Levy Memorial (U1800 section) 2003
  • Colorado Grand Prix (class A) champion, 2001 & 2002
  • Inventor, Chess Tools, checklists 1998
  • President, Aurora Chess club, many years, 1996-??/
  • USCF certified Advanced Chess Coach
  • Peak OTB rating 2033
  • Instructor, many years Rocky Mountain Chess Camp
  • Coaching since 1991
  • Passing background checks since 1976
  • Champion, 2016 Colrado Open (U2000)

Norbert Martinez
Phone: (Pager) 303-208-0711
Rating: 1634
Ages: all
Location: Metropolitan Denver
Willing to travel: will travel to student's location.

Norbert Martinez, an experienced teacher and coach, will design a program of instruction for the serious student or casual player interested in improving.

Brief Description

  • Masters of Education, CU at Boulder
  • Se habla espanol
  • Former Colorado Elementary School Teacher and Coach
Available for:
  • Scholastic Chess Instruction
  • Individual or Classroom Lessons
  • Coaching School Teams

Jesse R. Hester
Phone Home: 303-758-4399
Phone Cell: 303-257-9373
Rating: 1927
Ages: All
Brief Description
  • #43 in the nation for 16 year olds

Ted Arney
Rating: 1449
Ages: Grades K-12
Willing to travel:Yes

Brief Description

  • Been playing and teaching for 30 years all grades K-12.
  • Believes every student in U.S.A. should be taught chess for academic reasons.

Drew Ewing
Phone: (303) 233-2910 may leave message if needed.
Rating: 1243
Ages: all
Location: Lakewood Area

Highlights: Drew Ewing, exprienced player and teacher. I design a lesson format that is personal and benefits individual needs. Interested in teaching beginners to serious chess players. Most of all my lessons are free of charge!

Brief Description

  • 7 years of formal chess exprience and knowledge
  • U.S.C.F. Member
  • Currently teaching and coaching Green Mountains H.S. chess team
  • I specialize in the education of younger students (10-18)
Available for:
  • Individual Lessons or Group
  • Willing to coach tournament players

Larry Hathorn
Phone: 303-469-2208
Rating: 1112
Ages: 6-13
Location: Westminster area
Willing to travel: Teaches at home or will travel in Westminster area

Brief Description

Long-time educator; coached former state team champs; beginning to intermediate instruction

Boulder Area

Chris Peterson
Phone: 720 383-0477
Rating: 2236
Location: Lafayette (Boulder Area)
Willing to travel: Yes, within reason
Availability: Individual lessons, Groups, and Classes
Brief Description

  • Earned National Master title in January 2016
  • 2016 Loveland Open
  • 2014-15 CO Quick Champion
  • 2013-14 CO Quick Champion
  • Multiple Denver Chess Club Champion
  • My personal chess game has improved in gigantic leaps (at one time 200 points two months). I would like to see that same improvement in my students!

Paul J. Szeligowski
Phone:303 652 8890
Rating: 2062
Ages: all
Location: Niwot
Willing to travel: Yes

Brief Description

  • Teaches students of all ages. Offers private and group lessons. Taught at numerous schools and chess camps.
  • Founder, Boulder County Chess School:
  • Chess author specializing in unusual openings (e.g. The Colorado Defense).
  • Published articles in:
    • Colorado Chess Informant.
    • The Chess Correspondent.
    • The Myers Openings Bulletin.
    • Orang-utan.
    • SSKK Bulletinen.
  • Articles and analysis are referenced in numerous books, periodicals and on-line (for example:
  • Has provided commentary for the CSCA Scholastic State Tournament
  • Extensive Chess Library (approaching 1000 titles).
  • Recent accomplishments of my students include:
    • Colorado Scholastic State Champions for for 2007 through 2016. (Some years multiple sections; some years co-champions.)
    • Colorado Rocky Mountain K-12 Grade Championship, 2008 and 2009 (first place, multiple grade levels).
    • BVCL Championship team 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013. The BVCL ended in 2013.
    • 2008 National Scholastic K-12 Championship, 5th place (on tie breaks, half a point behind 1st place).

NM Joshua Romero
Phone:720 999 0494
Rating: 2203
Location: Boulder
Willing to travel: Yes

Other highlights:
  • National Master
  • Owner of the Boulder County Chess School
  • Teaching since 2006
  • B.A., Molecular Biology, University of Colorado at Boulder

Brief Description

  • I was able to achieve the rating of National Master (2200) after completing only 31 tournaments. I attribute this rapid rise in rating to an efficient learning method.
  • In my lessons, I aim to teach all areas of chess: opening, middlegame, endgame, tactics, and strategy.
  • Most importantly, we will learn proper etiquette and sport psychology to become good winners as well as good losers.

Rowan Tate
Phone: 720-431-1008
Rating: 1839
Ages: Primarily K-8
Location: Denver Metro Area including Boulder
Willing to travel: Yes

Brief Description

  • Teaching chess professionally as a primary occupation to kids for 10+ years. Studied chess for 14+ years.
  • Has become adept at teaching the fundamentals of good chess play to young students in a simple and fun way. Students report having a great time in these lessons.
  • Began running chess teaching company, WIZ-KIDS, in 2009 which teaches the program Rowan designed at 20+ Colorado schools.
  • Offers In-Home Private Individual and Group Lessons, with unique study plans.
  • Played in over 75 tournaments.
  • Has been background checked by & taught for LifeLong Learning in 2011.
Rowan founded WIZ-KIDS to share his passion for chess with kids, and to inspire them to learn and gain its amazing educational benefits. He has a well-developed teaching method, makes the lessons fun and relates well to kids, and loves seeing his students improve. Visit the WIZ-KIDS website and see Rowan's free teaching videos at

Greg Bausch
Phone: 303 485-6264
Rating: 986
Ages: K-6
Location: Longmont/Boulder surrounding areas
Willing to travel: Yes

Brief Description
5 years resident of Longmont Have taught at these schools in St. Vrain school district:
Black Rock Elemantary, Alpine Elemantary, Longmont Estates, San Borne Elementary, Prairie Ridge Elementary, Hygiene Elementary, Burlington Elementary



Colorado Springs Area

Dan Avery
Phone: (719) 635-4601
Rating: 1984
Ages: All, but the student must be willing and able to commit to a long-term program.
Location: Location: I prefer to teach at my home in Southwest Colorado Springs, but individual arrangements can be made, including lessons over the Internet or travel to the student's house.
Brief Description

Why should you consider my services?

I am an experienced chess teacher who has given lectures at chess clubs, universities, and schools. I have been the chess coach for the Colorado College. CC won the Colorado Intercollegiate Championships and the Internet Collegiate Chess League (ICCL) small school championship. I have taught individuals ranging in age from middle school students to retirees, and generally, students gain at least two hundred rating points (improvement is not guaranteed). I create an individual program for each student. Please call or email me if you have any questions.


DuWayne Langseth
Phone: (719) 481-3279
Rating: 1869
Location: Colorado Springs.
Brief Description

I coach school clubs in the Colorado Springs area and don't normally give private lessons, but I do know most of the professional chess teachers throughout Colorado and I can recommend one in your area, for your ability level. If you live in or near Colorado Springs, I can tell you which schools and local clubs have effective chess programs. Also, there are some excellent chess teaching software tools that will help in your (or your child's) advancement.


Anthea Carson
Phone: (303) 503-4280
Rating: 1828

Why should you hire me?

I am the co-author of the best-selling chess book Tactics Time, Tactics Time 2, 399 Super Easy Chess Tactics, and the children’s chess book How to Play Chess Like an Animal. I have over 15 years experience coaching chess in schools and private lessons. I know what helps kids improve their chess skills and how to teach them.
Brief Description

  • Chess Author with over two best-selling chess books and more to come!
  • Over 15 years experience coaching children’s chess in schools and private lessons.
  • Over 20 years experience playing tournament chess
  • 1800+ rating
  • Have been listed in the top 100 Female US Chess players

Paul Anderson
Phone: 719-459-9612
Ages: Any
Travel: Local

Brief Description
Offering individual and group instruction Group classes:
  • Chess 101 - First Principles Of Chess
  • Chess 102 - Foundations Of Chess
These classes involve a basic introduction to chess as a tool for improving mental thinking and spiritual stamina. Emphases are on development of basic chess-playing skills, notation, and sportsmanship. It is an exploratory, first course in the game of chess designed primarily for students planning to engage in tournament chess upon completion of this course. However, it also meets the needs of many students with other interests, as a refresher course in chess, a course for upgrading playing ability, a course for players looking to coach, or a course that provides students with a general “feel” for the game of chess.

  • 18 years of tournament chess experience
  • USCF Certified Tournament Director since 2015
  • 34 First Place finishes in USCF rated tournaments
  • Broke the expert level (USCF regular rating: 2002) on my 500th tournament game
  • Authored over 200 newsletters for Colorado Springs Chess News and over a 20 articles for the Colorado Chess Informant
  • 2004 T-shirt design contest winner for club
  • 2010 Jim Burden - Francisco Baltier Award Contest Winner
  • 2010, 2013 Colorado Springs City Chess Champion
  • 2012-2015 Colorado Springs Chess Club Officer
  • 2016 Colorado Springs City Speed Chess Champion
  • 2016 Colorado Springs Chess Club President


Michael Munafo
Phone: (720) 838-6864
Rating: 1925
Ages: 6yrs. and above.
Location:Elizabeth, Colorado

  • Numerous tournament victories, scholastic and open.
  • Top rated Colorado scholastic player during high school years (2000-2004).
  • Made top 100 nationally ranked players in the United States consistently for high school age levels, up to number 18 in 2002.
  • College Sophomore.
Brief Description

My lessons are especially designed for children beginning at six years of age up to adolescent years, preparing them for fun, yet competitive play. I believe that the most important element in learning to excel in anything is passion! It quickens the mind and adds fuel to talent. Students are excited to learn and to get their chance to compete. Previous students in particular learned not only how to play chess in a few weeks, but outplayed the other kids in the scholastic tournament sections! If the student and parent/guardian is willing to progress at a quicker rate for a strong competitive edge, homework will be assigned every lesson for completion and be reviewed the next session. Teaching course designed to suit each student.

I live in Elizabeth and can cover the Parker, Castlerock, Franktown, Kiowa, and surrounding areas. I am willing to travel to meet the student at an agreed location.


Louisville Area

Rick Christie
Phone: 303-665-4684
Location: Louisville

Brief Description
I enjoy working with elementary and middle level students who want to learn the game and believe that by learning and playing chess, they will perform better in a wide variety of academic areas. Students who play chess develop greater attention spans, become better readers and gain confidence in their everyday life. Learning chess should be fun.

- Certified Chess Coach, USCF
- Regular Instructor, Boulder County Chess School
- Retired elementary school teacher and principal
- Master's Degrees in School Administration and Counseling
- Teaches chess class for elementary schools
- Coaches Louisville Middle School Chess Club and Team
- Individual and group lessons
- Completed background checks and taught chess through LifeLong Learning, BVSD

Western Slope Area

Damian Nash
Phone: 435-260-2789
Rating: 2024
Location: Colorado Western Slope and Moab, Utah
Chess Camps: have run chess camps for students in Durango, Colorado, and Moab, Utah, for many years. These camps are expanding to Grand Junction and other cities on the Western Slope of Colorado.

Accomplishments Coaching Students:- Coached youth chess teams to win state championships in both Utah (1996) and Colorado (2007).
- Coached Durango Aerospace Design team to win consecutive world championships (2007-08) at the International Space Settlement Design Competition at NASA, with partner teams from Romania, Australia, Uruguay and India.
- Coached Durango Academic Decathlon team to win the state championships (2007) and attend Nationals in Hawaii

Chess Accomplishments: 30 years experience as a competitive tournament player.
- Led Boulder High School to win State Championship (1981)
- Three-time Utah Quick Chess champion (2002, 06, 08)
- Durango City Chess Champion (2005-08)
- Directed over 100 rated tournaments in Utah, Colorado, California and Arizona
Organized two national chess championship tournaments (US G/60 in 2002 and 2004)
- Writing a book about chess for educators of the Gifted/Talented

Teaching Accomplishments: - Received the Durango School District "Teacher of the Year" award (2007)
- Teaching certification with endorsements in high school Math, Science, Psychology, and Gifted/Talented
- Founding member of the Moab Community Charter School
- Founded Cayenne Academy at Cayenne Ranch in Lasal, Utah


If you would like your chess instruction services listed here, please contact Rick Nelson at

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