RAY KEENE OBE
MA Trinity College Cambridge; Officer of the British Empire, awarded by HM The Queen in person . Britain’s senior International chess Grandmaster, former British chess champion and Gold medallist in European Championship, writes every day in The Times. Ray has also written the world record 199 books (translated into 13 languages) on Chess, Mind Sports, Genius, Mental World Records, Art Appreciation and Thinking, and has won numerous first prizes in international chess tournaments across five continents.Ray has won 22 national championship titles. He represented Cambridge University on top board in the Boat Race of the Brain, the annual Varsity match against Oxford University, winning three of the four games he played and drawing one.
Ray also writes regularly for The Sunday Times, The Spectator, The Daily Yomiuri Tokyo, The Australian and The Gulf News. Ray studied German at Trinity where Ray shared lodgings with H R H Prince Charles. In 1981 Ray was awarded Gold Medal of the Chinese Olympic Association; before 1975 he was chess tutor to The Imperial Court of Iran. Raised £1.4m for 3 Mind Sports Olympiads 1997, 1998, 1999 – organised 1st ever Man vs Computer World Championship in any thinking sport -World Draughts Championship London 1992. Ray was appointed head of Mind Sports Faculty for 1994-2000 and 2013/2014 Leadership Academies of Prince Philipp of Liechtenstein and President of Mexico, Vicente Fox, in Leon. Twice winner of Global Chess Oscar as world’s best chess writer. He has recently been appointed a faculty member of Dr Manahel Thabet’s prestigious Gifted Academy, based in Dubai, London and Oxford.
Ray co-founded and organised the World Memory Championship 23 times since 1991. Personal bests in chess displays challenging multiple opponents at the same time,107 simultaneous opponents at Oxford 1973 where he won 101, drew 5 and lost one, and Leon Mexico 2013, defeating 17 opponents simultaneously without sight of the boards or pieces. Translator of Goethe’s Faust into English. Freeman of the City of London and granted right to Arms by the Royal College of Arms.
Ray is the most widely read chess columnist in the world, and has frequently appeared on television, most notably as main presenter of Duels Of The Mind, a series which aired on the UK ITV network..he was also the chess expert for the 80 programme series aired by Channel 4 on the Kasparov v Short 1993 world championship which Keene brought to London’s Savoy Theatre, one of the three world chess championships which Ray has organised in London, the other two being Kasparov v Karpov 1986, and Kasparov v Kramnik 2000. Ray is also a Commander of the Polish Royal Order of the White Swan and a Chevalier of the Ordre des Coteaux de Champagne. He has worked tirelessly for the Brain Trust charity ( www.braintrust.org.uk) since its inception in 1991.