Jersey City, NJ – September 23, 2016 – Fabiano Caruana, the 2016 U.S. Chess Champion and Visiting Grandmaster at Liberty Science Center, was honored for leading the U.S. chess team to its first Gold medal in 40 years over 189 other countries in the just completed World Chess Olympiad in Baku, Azerbaijan. An American flag that was flown over the U.S. Capitol in Caruana’s honor was presented to the chess champion along with a New Jersey Assembly Resolution at a ceremony at Liberty Science Center on Thursday, September 22.
The 24-year-old Caruana received a State House Commendation, initiated by New Jersey Assembly members Nicholas A. Chiaravalloti and Angela V. McKnight, as the duly elected representatives of the 31st Legislative District. The resolution congratulated Caruana on his accomplishments in chess, which date back to when he was only 14 years old, including: earning the Gold Medal in the Olympiad, winning several national scholastic championships, as well as two gold medals at the Pan-American Youth Championships and becoming the youngest Grandmaster in the history of the United States, beating the record set by Bobby Fischer. Additionally, he was cited for his commitment to chess education as visiting Grandmaster of Liberty Science Center and Ambassador of LSC’s Chess Rules! program, an in-school, afterschool, and weekend initiative designed to expose underserved children throughout New Jersey to the fun and wonders of chess.
Senator Robert Menendez, who arranged for the flag to be flown over the U.S, Capitol, also recognized Caruana’s remarkable accomplishments bringing chess to a new generation of students across the State of New Jersey with an entry into the Congressional Record on September 14.
The resolution and flag were presented in conjunction with a special high-level chess event featuring Caruana in a “tag-team” blitz game against World Champion Magnus Carlsen. In addition, the event featured an international live telecast from Liberty Science Center of Carlsen playing chess against 11 people simultaneously; the players, who hailed from more than 6 countries, earned this unique opportunity through the Play Magnus app.
“We are thrilled that Fabiano, our very own Visiting Grandmaster, received this significant honor at Liberty Science Center,” said Paul Hoffman, LSC President and CEO. “Not only are we celebrating Fabiano’s success in the U.S. Chess Team’s historic victory, but also his relentless advocacy for chess education and LSC’s Chess Rules! program, which can positively affect a student’s academic performance and the development of emotional intelligence and life skills.”
Chess Rules! is Liberty Science Center’s scholastic chess iniative. Chess Rules! will offer chess instruction and chess competitions at LSC as well as in local community venues. The 1,500-year-old game is known to develop children’s critical thinking skills, memory, analytical power, and decision-making capability, as well as concentration and academic performance.
About Liberty Science Center
Liberty Science Center (LSC.org) is a 300,000-square-foot not-for-profit learning center located in Liberty State Park on the Jersey City bank of the Hudson near the Statue of Liberty. Dedicated to bringing the power, promise, and pure fun of science and technology to people of all ages, Liberty Science Center houses 12 museum exhibition halls, a live animal collection with 110 species, giant aquariums, a 3D theater, the world’s largest IMAX Dome Theater, live simulcast surgeries, a tornado-force wind simulator, K-12 classrooms and labs, and teacher-development programs. More than 250,000 students visit the Science Center each year, and tens of thousands more participate in the Center’s offsite and online programs. LSC is the most visited cultural institution in New Jersey with 650,000 visitors annually and the largest interactive science center in the NYC-NJ metropolitan area.