Women have made chess more beautiful and are making a difference in the world. #HappyWomensDay

Whether crafty moves that win championships or handicrafts that capture imaginations, these women have made chess their art.

the Polgar Sisters

1. The Polgar Sisters are known for mastering chess strategy, becoming world champions, and bringing the game to countless youth through their initiatives.

Hungarian-American chess player @Susan Polgar was women’s world champion from 1996 to 1999, and even qualified for the men’s world championship in 1986. Judit Polgar became the youngest international Grandmaster ever at age 15, beating Bobby Fischer’s record.

Sydney Gruber's Painted Chess Sets

2. Sydney Gruber displays her talents on the chess board by painting chess sets. This one is dazzling rendition of the Judit Polgar Chess Set.

Ruth Merci

3. Ruth Merci and her family developed creative humor, music, dance, and street performances to bring the message of hope and forgiveness to life where people are suffering, outcast, and in prison. Chess is one of the many gifts she loves to share and her blog shares the journey in amazing photos

Grace Pyles PicoDragon Chess Pieces

4. Grace Pyles recycles wooden chessmen with character and models each dragon in a completely unique and imaginative way. Here are a handful of her latest PicoDragons. She is planning to make a complete set soon.

Detective Cookie

5. In one of the most ethnically and linguistically diverse areas of the United States, a suburb of Southeast Seattle, Detective Denise “Cookie” Bouldin inspires local youth to avoid violence and become successful adults by developing critical thinking skills through the game of chess. With a twice-a-week chess club, she’s reach about 160 students per week. This has become so popular that a chess park is being developed after her name.

DGT Revelation Chess Computer

6. Radio celebrity Kim Komando is known mostly for her safety tips and advice for people navigating the digital world. At Chess House, Kim discovered the world’s most sophisticated chess computer. It inspired her recent podcast, Checkmate: Humans and computers take on chess with surprising results.

Carolyn Cavanaugh Chess Set

7. Carolyn Cavanaugh’s chess set, the House of Hauteville was an artist’s dream come true. The story of how it came about is fascinating all on its own. Today there is steady demand for these mysterious stone-like cast figures a striking compliment to the Queen Anne hardwood chess board by Chess House shown above. Both the set and board are made in the Eastern U.S. by people who take pride in the quality of their work.

Phiona Mutesi

8. Phiona Mutesi’s journey from seeming impossibility in the slums of Kampala, Uganda to opportunity, education, and giving back to her family and community. Despite repeated obstacles and self-doubt, her coach Robert believed in her and helped her rise above the losses and continue seeking to win at the game and win in life. This story is beautifully told in the recent Queen of Katwe Disney movie, now on DVD. Today she is in her early 20’s and beginning her college education.

There are countless others deserving recognition who are making a huge difference behind the scenes by serving schools and after-school clubs.

We thank you and want to support your work by providing excellent chess education supplies and curriculum for schools and homes.


Do you know a woman that's making a difference through chess? Tell us about her and what she is doing!