Judy Kay-Wolff

International Bridge Press Association Speaks Up on Pendergaffe ….

For those of you not privileged to have a subscription to the IBPA, on Page 15 of the IBPA Bulletin, August 10, 2010 Issue, under News and Views, the following appeared.


“Calls for an ACBL investigation into its Educational Foundation’s dealings are being made to determine what has happened to the bequest of Peter Pender, who died in 1990, and why his wishes are not being honoured.”

“Pender left the ACBL $50,000 (which ended up in the Educational Foundation coffers) to endow its VuGraph with the name Pendergraph to perpetuate his name.  Pender also donated $27,500 to the ACBL to provide The Peter Pender Trophy (and individual replicas) to the winners of the biennial Junior Team Trials, a practice apparently discontinued in 1995. ACBL CEO Jay Baum has vowed to rectify this oversight.”

Perhaps this will begin to evoke the answers we are anxiously awaiting.

Besides my current blog (one of several) entitled “Pendergraph Pending”, there is also much about the above on my husband Bobby’s site entitled “What’s to Become of America’s Talented Youth?”  Someone interjected the subject of the Pendergaffe and from that thread there emerged many remarks on the Pender issue (rather than the original theme of America’s Juniors).   JKW


DiogenesAugust 10th, 2010 at 10:57 am

I salute the IBPA for calling this disservice to Peter Pender to the attention of the bridge world. Perhaps those responsible (for whatever the reasons) will step up to the plate and make amends, commemorating the name of a bridge champion and generous member of the ACBL.

ChuckAugust 10th, 2010 at 6:24 pm

Have you confronted the ACBL, and if so, what do they say?

Judy Kay-WolffAugust 11th, 2010 at 8:19 am

Yes, the following have been notified of the outrageous mishandling of Peter Pender’s money by not honoring his memory as expected for his $77,500 endowment:

ACBL BOD individually, ACBL Board of Governors, The Educational Foundation, The President and CEO of the ACBL, and the present and former ACBL attorneys.

Done to date:

On the $27,500 endowment to Juniors — Agreement by CEO to make current the 17 years absence of replicas, engraving and presention to winner of Junior Trials every two years.

On the $50,000 to promote Peter’s name — Receipt of a long list of expenditures beginning a year and a half AFTER Peter’s death and ongoing until 2005 (LONG AFTER the disappearance of the Pendergraph).

Actions speak louder than spreadsheets and no attempt monetarily offered to equitably rectify the situation (in terms of dollars misspent).

LindaAugust 11th, 2010 at 1:20 pm

What would you like to see happen Judy?

Judy Kay-WolffAugust 11th, 2010 at 3:21 pm

Dear Linda,


Thanks for asking.  Since Bobby has been involved with this issue from the get-go (and even before — when he and Peter discussed the endowments heart to heart) — here are HIS THOUGHTS …..


“The simple (but altogether effective solution) would be for the ACBL to make ‘whole’ Peter Pender’s original investment of $50,000. For argument’s sake, though the ACBL made their first payment to Bridge Base (according to the EF records, in June of 1992, over a year and a half after Peter’s death) and continued shelling out to other sources through November of 1998 (totalling an outlay of about $34,000) — when all was said and done, what did Peter receive for his money?” The answer: An abandoned project and no effort to sweep up the ashes and create another venue to honor Peter.

“No one seems to remember the use of the Pendergraph since the turn of the century and yet there were charges in 2004 and 2005 for about $11,000. If the money was used in a timely fashion (and stopped being plundered when the Pendergraph disappeared off the face of the earth) — just imagine how much money would have accumulated if left at interest of 5% — with the rates being much higher back then. The unused balance would have at least doubled by now and that is without compounding it.  As a result, that money would be available NOW to use for whatever projects or purposes that the ACBL considered appropriate, with the only necessary caveat being to give Peter Pender much-warranted publicity for his involvement with the donation(s) by keeping his name before the public. Sadly, the ACBL missed the boat early on while Peter’s contemporaries and friends were still very much on the scene. Now many have joined him up above. However, let’s play catch up (though not quite the same) and make sure the bridge world of today hears, sees and remembers the name of Peter Pender as was his intention back in 1990.”


“In that way the ACBL, or its designees (if it so desires), would be expected to donate to worthwhile purposes and/or projects bearing his name.”

“A perfect example comes to mind involving International Bridge which Peter represented well and dearly loved: A fund could be established to help defray the reasonable expenses for an ‘amateur player’ (as opposed to a paid professional) who has won the right to represent the USA, but cannot afford to attend because the expenses meted out to the player were substantually less than the actual cost with the ever rising inflation.  That player must have a worthwhile reputation and be well thought of as an expert — and one who practices Active Ethics.  The ideal example was the qualification (but eventual exclusion from the team) of Russ Arnold. He won the right by playing on my winning 2007 World Senior Team Trials for Shanghai, but was forced to decline because of the prohibitive expenses and therefore we had to replace him.”


“As you might guess, there are many worthwhile positive projects which come up from time to time.  Also the ACBL’s net worth has at least doubled in the last relatively short period of time, making what I am asking a slam dunk!”

“As I have said before, Peter did not get a bang for his buck. $50,000 designated for the vugraph or potential Pendergraph materialized for a relatively short period of time (starting late and stopping early) and Peter’s endowment (including interest) should represent far more than the $10,700 that the EF books reflect as of 2009.”

Linda, I hope this will give you and everyone else a better understanding of what we consider a terrible miscarriage of justice. Peter Pender was deserving of much more!


Ellen Caitlin PomerAugust 17th, 2010 at 4:24 pm

Thanks Judy. Not only is this very elightening but far more disturbing. As you say, this is a terrible miscarriage of justice and the IBPA alone cannot rectify the situation. Members need to talk with their reps on Board of Governors. By the way, woud you be prepared to be interviewed in the next Bridge Forum Bulletin which goes out to about 8,ooo online players? Many ae new to the game so background info will be important.

Thank you for keeping us informed.

Ellen Caitlin Pomer

Judy Kay-WolffAugust 23rd, 2010 at 8:24 am

Dear Ellen:

Forgive my tardiness of replying to your comment above, dated August 17th to my blog of August 9th. I move on quickly and I am embarrased to say I have so many active blogs in which I am caught up, I neglected to

check on ones written two weeks ago.

I am very interested in your remarks and will bring you up to date immediately via a private email.

Thanks for caring.