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International Society of Go Studies

Our Members 9 - Prof. Thomas Hsiang (Honorary Advisor)

Daniela Trinks & Kim Chaelim / July 24, 2023

Prof. Thomas Hsiang

Prof. Thomas Y. Hsiang, a Professor Emeritus of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Rochester, stands as a towering figure in the world of Go. Recently honored with the prestigious Edward Lasker Award at the 2023 U.S. Go Congress, his exceptional contributions have extended far beyond national borders, making a profound impact on the American Go Association (AGA) and the international Go community.

With an illustrious career as the AGA's VP of International Relations, Prof. Hsiang played a pivotal role in creating opportunities for North American players to participate in international competitions. His diplomatic acumen and strategic vision helped foster collaborative ties between Go communities worldwide, furthering the game's global reach and influence.

In 2008, the International Go Federation (IGF) recognized Prof. Hsiang's leadership abilities by appointing him as the IGF Vice President. In this capacity, he organized and supported Go promotions around the world, championing the IGF's continuous efforts to gain recognition for Go by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). Additionally, Prof. Hsiang served as a Secretary General at the International Mind Sports Association (IMSA), where he played a vital role in securing funding and venues for prestigious events like the World Mind Sports Games, The Sport Accord World Mind Games, the IMSA Elite Mind Games, and the IMSA Masters.

Yet, amidst his international activities and responsibilities, Prof. Hsiang remained deeply engaged with the local Go community in Rochester NY. Regarded as one of the engines driving Go in the region, he dedicated himself to teaching and mentoring aspiring players, fostering a legacy of excellence and service.

The impact of Prof. Thomas Hsiang's work extends beyond teaching and organizing; he is also a founding executive director of the Iwamoto North American Foundation for Go (INAF), which has contributed significantly to funding initiatives such as the National Go Center in Washington DC. Additionally, his involvement as a director of the North American Go Federation (NAFG) has helped coordinate Go activities in collaboration with the Canadian Go Association.

Prof. Hsiang's relentless pursuit of excellence has been acknowledged on the international stage, with the Japanese Foreign Affairs Minister's Commendation in 2021 and a distinguished 7 dan certificate from the Nihon Kiin in 2014.